Leading Millennials in a Changing Economy

You've got the bean bags, you have the fancy espresso maker, you have a ping pong table and an open floor plan. You've done everything right. 6 months in and you're newly hired millennial staff isn't happy. You're left scratching your head saying but I did everything right...
WRONG!!!
Today's narrative spends too much time generalizing a population on surface level attributes assuming there are no deeper layers. Would millennials enjoy a creative workspace that encourages collaboration...sure. Would millennials want a job that encourages work life balance and free espressos...of course. But this is simply icing on the cake.
The millennial generation wants what every other generation in the past wants...to work for a company with defined career paths, clearly defined goals and initiatives and strong leadership.
I know what you're saying. The path to success is never a straight line, goals and initiatives change regularly and leadership is subjective. It's just not possible to provide this consistently.
I want to challenge that way of thinking. Yes, you cannot write a roadmap that states, do this then this and you will become CEO. However, leading companies are clearly defining goals and initiatives, laying out future opportunities and engaging their workforce in meaningful conversations about their career. They are doing it in a proactive way. Instead of using conventional approaches like annual reviews to discuss career path and employee satisfaction, these leading companies will use every opportunity to engage with their employees. See "One Minute Manager" by Ken Blanchard for simple and effective methods to engage your workforce.
Small shifts in the way of thinking can make big and lasting change in your organization.

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