One of the most common issues I hear from employers is turnover. Business owners and managers struggle to understand why they are turning over their millennials. They’ve labeled these young professionals disloyal, discontent, and “job hoppers.”
After more than a decade of mentoring college students, I can tell you from experience that millennials are in fact very loyal. They’re loyal to their friends, their families, and their goals. They want to be loyal to an employer yet they understand most organizations won’t return their loyalty. And I’m not just talking about job security.
A loyal employer will invest in its employees’ professional development. The millennial generation wants to grow. They’re looking for guidance. They want to contribute. They want your feedback. They want to be challenged and mentored.
If you’re not providing these opportunities, millennials will recognize their current position is a dead end, and they won’t sit for long. They’ll look elsewhere for the next challenge, and the next employer who is willing to return their loyalty.
Many companies I speak with are not willing to change. Hiring managers expect the old order of business—for young employees to remain in a starting role for three to five years, offering no professional growth, just as the managers had experienced in their own early careers.
Yet veterans who expect newbies to “earn their stripes” or “put in their time” will be sorely disappointed. Millennials won’t stick around long enough. This doesn’t mean they need promotions, huge raises, or job title boosts. But they do want flexible positions with room to grow, where they can take on new tasks and tackle new problems, growing as individuals while they help the organization grow, too.
So you want to curb turnover? Change the culture within your workforce. Be loyal to your employees’ growth, and they will be loyal to you. Companies who get this are gaining an advantage in the talent war—and growing right along with their millennials.