Managing the Millennials - Chip Espinoza, Mick Ukleja

Managing the Millennials - Chip Espinoza, Mick Ukleja

Learn here all the secrets about managing the companies of the future and how to connect the growing workforce with plans and ideas pertinent to your organization.

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Millennials are complex, technologically skilled, provocative, brilliant and special - at least that's what their parents and teachers have told them throughout their lives. But who are the generation Y and how to deal with them? Chip Espinoza and Mick Ukleja will teach you in "Managing the Millennials".

The authors offers tactics and strategies to managers confused by this unpredictable generation that does not take their suggestions seriously, but manage to succeed in complicated challenges.

Got interested to understand better the behavior and thoughts of the generation Y, better managing them to the success of the organization? Stay with us in this summary!

About the book "Managing the Millennials"

With the book Managing the Millennials (2016), written by Chip Espinoza and Mick Ukleja, you will discover in a direct and very well explained the main skills for the management of the current workforce.

This book is distributed by the publisher Wiley, has 214 pages divided into 15 chapters.

About the authors Chip Espinoza and Mick Ukleja

Chip Espinoza is the Academic Director of Organizational Psychology and Nonprofit Leadership at Concordia University Irvine. He was recently named by the Economic Times as one of the top 15 thought leaders on the future of work. In addition, he is the author of "Millennials Who Manage".

The author Mick Ukleja is the president and CEO of Leadership TraQ, a consulting and management company. Ukleja is a former director and current chairman of the board of the Astronauts Memorial Foundation of NASA.

To whom is this book indicated?

The content of this book is indispensable for people who hold some leadership position in any sphere of the company and for those who wish to learn how to deal with the current generation.

The generation Y, as they are called, is virtually dominating the market more and more every year, so, know how to deal with them, extracting the best of each one is crucial for the development of the company.

Main ideas of the book "Managing the Millennials"

  • Present flexibility to work with autonomous Millennials on mutual goals;
  • Use affirmation and positive feedback to encourage Millennials in charge;
  • Provide freedom for these imaginative employees to express themselves;
  • Develop relationships to engage them;
  • Disarm their defenses by focusing on their accomplishments;
  • Do not take their abrasiveness to the personal side;
  • Show them the consequences of their actions;
  • Millennials with no defined focus may find they are performing multiple tasks, so determine clear directions;
  • Encourage indifferent employees to see meaning in their work.

This summary is divided into 2 parts: "Generational Traits and Gaps" and "Efficient Management of Millennials". Keep the reading to know more!

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[Book Summary] Managing the Millennials - Chip Espinoza, Mick Ukleja

Overview: Part I - Generational Traits and Gaps

To begin with this subject, the authors Chip Espinoza and Mick Ukleja introduces a little about the generations before Millennials, and what the differences between them imply in the work environment.

The Millennials were well protected by their parents and had a great structure of life during childhood.

Of the entire US workforce, individuals in this generation represent 31 million, and that number will increase rapidly in the coming years.

When people of a certain age experience high-impact events, they develop a similar mindset that shapes their perspectives and values of life.

Past Generations

People born between 1925 and 1945 in the United States form the generation of builders, who experienced the Great Depression and World War II. They respect authority, value a strong work ethic, and expect rewards.

Following, came the Baby Boomers, the more than 80 million Americans born between 1946 and 1964. They experienced the emergence of television and rock and roll, the conflict in Vietnam and the movements for civil rights and women's.

For them, the work must be to accumulate material wealth and create a professional identity.

Born between the years 1965 and 1977, the 38 million Generation X is the bridge between the Boomers and the Millennials. They grew up with video games, MTV and computers. A high divorce rate, the spread of AIDS and the lack of corporate loyalty shaped their lives.

These people value independence, mobility, and balance between personal and professional life.

The Millennials

From 1978 onwards came the Millennials, a generation carved out of technology, social media and iPods. They were praised by their parents for any accomplishment. They have strong opinions about their capabilities and have high expectations about their employers.

They want creative challenges, instant feedback, and instant autonomy. Conventional management techniques will fail with employees in this industry.

To stay relevant, strong and vital, companies need to understand and motivate young people of this generation. Every new generation questions authority, seeks alternative ways and irritates those who wish to maintain the status quo.

However, the Millennials are unique: they do not need the older ones to receive information, much of the world's knowledge is available at a click of the mouse.

Overview: Part II - Efficient Management of Millennials

In the second part of the book "Managing the Millennials", the authors Chip Espinoza and Mick Ukleja brings 9 practices that will help you in managing Millennials employees.

This generation requires a style of adaptive management rather than forcing employees to change to function well. Look for a middle ground in this case, allowing your subordinates to question you openly.

Forge a relationship with your employees, and assume your role of provider and mentor. When managers understand the motivation behind the Millennials' perceptions, they can build trust bridges between their departments.

Successful managers with this generation make use of the following practices:

1. Flexibility with the autonomous

Millennials prioritize the balance between personal and professional life, so their managers must be flexible. A Millennial will not sacrifice everything at the top of their career, they prefer to switch from company to abandon their personal interests.

Managers who try to mold the youth of this generation to their vision will fail. Many of them prefer to put the burden of making sacrifices on the backs of new employees than trying to learn to be flexible.

After all, managers usually have years of hard work and feel that the younger ones should have respect and listen to them anyway.

2. Encourage the millennials

As Millennials value rewards, their superiors should offer incentives. Recognition and reward programs for employees aren't new, but the way they are done with young people can create conflict.

As quoted by one manager:

"We just did not have the expectations Millennials have or, if we had, we would never verbalize them."

Young people engage in affirmative action and positive feedback. They received this during their childhood and look forward to it at their workplace. Yet they disdain programs like "employee of the month," plaques or titles.

They want to get something they value, and they want it soon enough. However, no one deserves a trophy simply by complying with the obligation. Therefore, to establish effective reward programs, follow these 3 steps:

  1. Develop rewards that they value;
  2. List clear and specific objectives;
  3. Evaluate your performance in a transparent, fair and timely manner.

This strategy can be very useful!

3. Cultivating the imaginative

Generation Y members are imaginative and emphasize self-expression, so your managers must cultivate this natural propensity to think outside the box. They are not anti-change and flourish when they are able to create, innovate and solve problems.

But creativity rarely spreads in restricted environments by processes and procedures. Managers who grant unlimited creative freedom for internal policies reap good fruit.

Millennials get bored quickly, so give them new assignments and let them have fun while working on the projects. This generation does not draw boundaries between work and fun.

Don't ask for their input if you can not respond promptly to it, for they become easily frustrated when their ideas are not incorporated. On the other hand, they become energized and motivated when the opposite happens.

4. Engaging the Selfish

The authors Chip Espinoza and Mick Ukleja explains that, as their parents preferred to pamper them rather than teach, the Millennials grew in an environment of much attention and affirmation. At work, they expect managers to take on the supporting roles that were occupied by their parents.

Past generations understood that their desires and needs were secondary if compared to those of the organization. Millennials do not work that way.

As one manager said:

"(My boss) told me what was expected of me, and if I could not deliver, they would find someone who could."

Managers will make the most of their younger employees by showing interest in them, find a middle ground of ideas and request their participation. You don't always have to go out to drink with them, but try to engage them, as much as possible, on a personal level as well.

This goes against what traditional practices say, which demonize any personal relationship with subordinates. Millennials, however, work harder - and are more loyal - with managers who like them.

5. Disarming on the defensive

They are defensive and prioritize achievements. The manager should disarm their low edge for negative feedbacks. During their childhood, when facing obstacles, the Millennials always had their parents to carry out the ransom.

When these newcomers receive criticism, they respond by acting defensively, passing on responsibility, blaming, or getting hurt and angry.

According to the book "Managing the Millennials", to disarm these attitudes, bosses can use these techniques:

  • Do not argue;
  • Recognize their emotions, award points and honor their competence;
  • Instead of talking about guilt, discuss a way to solve the problem together;
  • Avoid embarrassing them or hurting their pride;
  • Give them a chance to make constructive criticisms;
  • Tell how much you value the working relationship between you;
  • There is no victory, the goal is a more effective working environment.

6. Self-Differentiate Abrasives

For Chip Espinoza and Mick Ukleja, Millennials can be abrasive even without intention, so the superiors can not take arrogance personally. They talk about what comes to mind in meetings and ask instructions, which may irritate some managers.

The manager capable of self-differentiation, that is, separating the individual's professional position, manages to maintain the balance of the workplace and manage more effectively.

7. Broaden the "myopes" view

Millennials employees may not have much sense of the consequence of their actions. Good managers teach them by broadening their vision - taking advantage of everyday situations to facilitate learning - to make them connect their responsibilities at work with the overall goals of the organization.

As they like creative thinking and problem solving, utilizing exercises as teaching tools can also be effective.

8. Target the Defocused

In the book "Managing the Millennials", is stated that Generation Y workers are proud of their ability to conduct multiple tasks at the same time, but some managers may dismiss this behavior as disconnected and unfocused.

Both groups benefit when the manager provides a high level of guidance and then allows Millennials to apply their know-how as they dislike ambiguity and respond better to detailed instructions.

Provide concise directions that address what, where, when, and how to accomplish the task presented. Remember feedback at appropriate times.

Follow these steps to delegate to Millennials:

  • Do not assume they understood, ask questions to make sure it was clear;
  • Deliver feedback quickly, in conversations or in meetings;
  • When you know they understand, let them free to do the work;
  • Make sure that everyone understands the goals and results you need.

9. Motivate the Indifferent

Millennials need to find meaning in their work. For them, money means less than the appreciation of what has been done.

Once you understand the importance that a task or responsibility has in the overall business landscape, they will be happy to help. You can motivate this generation by showing that the work they do matters.

What do other authors say about it?

In "The Happiness Industry", William Davies explains how happiness is a resource or the company, helping in the development of it. Showing that science can measure it in order to monitor the feelings of employees.

Sandro Magaldi and José Salibi Neto shows in the book "Managing Tomorrow" the most important skills and strategies for running a company. Teaching to be prepared for the future, predicting it and raising the results.

In the book "Emotional Intelligence", Daniel Goleman features the matter of understand our own feelings, spreading this emotions through the company to achieve goals. He also mentions the feedback culture and its importance.

Okay, but how can I apply this to my life?

  • Understand that Millennials differ from past generations;
  • Use positive feedbacks to motivate Millennials;
  • Lead the Millennials as to the consequences of their actions;
  • Seek to give meaning to their work, they are more connected to it than to money itself.

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Book 'Managing the Millennials'