According to research parsed by Inc., 53% of hiring managers say it’s difficult to find and retain Millennials, which is particularly problematic when you consider that Millennials now make up the largest generation in the U.S. workforce.
So, what can employers do to retain Millennials?
They can start by offering top-notch mentorship programs. However, they should make sure to pay attention to what research indicates Millennials actually want from their mentorship programs before implementing them.
Here’s what Millennials want from their workplace mentors.
To Be Inspired and to Find or Nurture a Sense of Purpose
According to research conducted by Deloitte, two out of every three Millennials state that their organization’s purpose is the reason they chose to work there, yet only one out of five Millennials in organizational cultures without perceived purpose is satisfied at work.
And according to Deloitte’s Millennial Survey 2017, Millennials are steered by strong values and want to make an impact through their employers, both in the workplace and in the wider world. They want their work to serve a purpose that helps other people in the world.
Be sure the mentors you have mentoring Millennials understand that Millennials have a wider view of the world and are really only satisfied when their work, learning and development, and career objectives align with those views and a greater sense of purpose.
Reverse Mentoring Opportunities
Millennials don’t typically appreciate or excel in archaic hierarchical structures or top-down corporate relationships where the boss is always right regardless of the situation. And they want to partake in opportunities where their voices and expertise are valued, too.
Reverse mentoring opportunities allow Millennials to be more open and provide feedback to their superiors in a more conversational setting. And they also allow them to help others with their technical skills and expertise.
Millennials particularly enjoy reverse mentoring because they are more inclined to engage in teamwork and collaborative environments where everyone’s expertise and viewpoints are valued. So, make sure your senior employee mentors are more open to a two-way street in their mentoring journey if they want to keep Millennials around.
Honesty and Transparency
Per research conducted by Randstad, Millennials value honesty and transparency from their leaders over any other leadership quality. They will feel betrayed by their mentors if their mentors aren’t straight with them, and they will have a hard time trusting mentors who don’t provide honest feedback on a consistent basis, even if the feedback is hard to hear.
Flexible and Do-It-Yourself Options
When it comes to mentoring opportunities, Millennials essentially want their mentor-mentee relationship to be between themselves and their mentors. They don’t want to follow rigid guidelines or schedules.
Instead, they’d rather meet with their mentor when it makes the most sense to do so and sometimes even prefer micromentoring options where mentors share videos or tips with advice that’s relevant to them. And they’re also open to group mentoring options, where they share a mentor with other colleagues.
As you fine-tune your mentorship programs and options for your Millennial employees, keep the information above in mind to ensure that they succeed.