As baby boomers retire from executive positions, millennials are expected to take over leadership roles and even to transform the organization in the future. Transformational thought leader, Rob Delany, worries that companies are risking losing their best and brightest… who will still become future leaders, but at their competitors. He asks, “how can companies attract and retain millennials, teach them management skills, give them the seasoning they need to become successful leaders and all the while retain them?”
In order to create a process where millennial leaders can thrive, today’s management needs to create a more transparent leadership pipeline that enables millennials to envision themselves in an executive position down the line with the power to transform.
Here are some valuable tips on how to create a transformational leadership culture that future millennial leadership will embrace:
1) Enhance your current culture. Make your company feel like a place with an eye on the future; a place where millennials will like to work. Alleviate some of their stresses so they can work harder for you. For example, develop an environment and policies that are supportive of today’s lifestyles, such as encouraging family time, creating social interaction, doing good deeds, and more, without compromising productivity and performance.
2) Communicate your tradition as a springboard to the future. Transformation isn’t just about changing the system, it’s usually about building on top of a solid foundation. Many companies assume employees will grasp a company’s tradition and what has made it successful just by being there. That won’t automatically happen unless management takes the initiative to define the tradition and communicate it within the context of the future.
3) Don’t just be a boss, be a mentor. Be receptive to transformative ideas and respectful in your feedback. Coach future leadership on the most effective ways to to get the organization embrace transformation.
4) Create ownership. Don’t just make millennials aware of an agenda: make them a part of it. Allow them to develop a sense of ownership in what they do, so they can envision themselves setting the agenda a few years down the line.
5) Define the organization’s future vision. It is easier to feel that they are contributing to the organization’s success when they clearly visualize what success means. Make millennials proud of what they are part of growing.
6) Develop new views on performance and on rewarding successful performance. In a transformative process, key performance indicators (KPI’s) most assuredly will transform as well. Make sure performance and rewards keep pace with the transformation, so people feel appreciated for what they do.
Making an effort to attract and retain millennials will pay rich dividends because you are investing in your future leadership and the success of your organization.