Conscious Compensation: The Key to Retaining Earnest, Sensitive Millennials

Millennials are the newest generation to enter the workforce. For many employers, they are still revered as unknown and unpredictable. They are scary and intimidating, different. Because employers don’t understand them, they have not quite fully come to understand how to effectively manage and retain them.

In Payscale’s 2015 Compensation Best Practices whitepaper they point out the fact that Millennials aren’t running the show quite yet, citing 50% of employers don’t plan on changing their strategy based on this new generation. 

Commonly also referred to as Generation Y, the most common definitions of “Millennials” define them as the group of people who reached young adulthood and entered the workforce since the turn of the most recent century, or those born between 1980 and 2000. As more of them continue to enter the workforce and establish themselves in full time roles, employers have begun to see the resulting changes in the workplace.

A New Generation Means a New Way of (Work) Life

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Having been raised differently than the generations preceding them, millennials have a whole new set of quirks. They are motivated more by meaning, impact and relationships than money and climbing the ladder. They often seek fulfillment over success. Because they are in touch with their own feelings as well as the feelings of others, they place a high level of importance on communication. Millennials want to be kept in the loop, they want to know what is going on around them and why. Being transparent with them regarding what is going on in your organization will in turn help you retain those idealistic millennials who don’t like to be given the run around. They want you to be straightforward with them and be able to the same back to you. This WILL work in your favor!

When it comes to the differences between millennials and those who preceded them, it has been shown that they are also the most likely to hop jobs. If they are not satisfied in their work environment, or if a better option comes along, they are more likely to vacate their current role for greener pastures. This is another reason it is especially important to adopt a strategy of open communication when interacting with millennials within your work environment..

A New Generation Means New Things to Offer

One of the greatest qualities of the millennial generation is their value of relationships. Whether it be with their superiors or with their fellow employees, having a good relationship and a sense of loyalty in addition to feeling valued by their employer and superiors can be enough to keep that wavering millennial around.  

Their relational focus means many of them have the capacity to thrive as a member of a team because they make an effort to work well with others. They care what others think of them. Their desire of inclusion and acceptance makes them hardworking and accommodating. When their work involves more social and interactive aspects, it also gives them what they need to thrive. They also have a greater desire for feedback and affirmation and often seek it out, allowing their employers greater opportunity for coaching and development. Problems are more often addressed head on and dealt with quickly. They are eager to learn, eager to succeed and eager to please.

Millennials and whatever generations come after them are where our workforce is heading; there is no way around it. For the success of your company it is important to retain these employees and use them to your benefit. While they have plenty to learn from the generations ahead of them, they also have much to offer and qualities themselves that can be shared and taught to others.

Download Payscale’s free whitepaper 2015 Compensation Best Practices Report and learn more about the trends affecting compensation.


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1 Comment on "Conscious Compensation: The Key to Retaining Earnest, Sensitive Millennials"

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Fred Whittlesey

The use of “Conscious Compensation” in the headline is an intellectual property violation. I am the former Chief Compensation Officer of Payscale. Many years after leaving the company I trademarked the term Conscious Compensation. Payscale is knowingly violating intellectual property laws – I warned them about this and requested that this article headline be modified. Payscale investors should be aware of the financial risk they now face from continued illegal use of the mark.