Making the Millennial Mindset Work For You
- Article by:Health Career Center
If you’ve heard one thing about millennials, it’s that they want everything for nothing. All of the rewards, with none of the hard work.
But the truth of the matter is, millennials are just as willing to work as hard as everyone else. The difference is, unlike previous generations, they demand to know why they’re working so hard. And “because I said so” or “because I had to when I was your age” aren’t good enough answers for them.
For hospitals where seniority is highly valued—and questioning authority isn’t—it’s easy to see why this mindset is such a problem. It also explains why those same hospitals struggle to retain nurses between the ages of 18-35 for more than a few years, before losing them to other opportunities.
However, there are ways to satisfy millennials’ desires and set up your organization for success at the same time. Take a moment to read them below, then visit HealthCareerCenter.com to reach a whole new generation of up-and-coming talent.
Include millennials in important decisions.
Keep in mind, no one is suggesting that you should simply hand someone a leadership position fresh out of school. But involving them in the decision-making process early—for example, as part of your professional development council—will help you groom them for the day that they are ready to be a healthcare leader.
Also, think of the upsides for the rest of your committee: you’ll gain a new perspective, and all the valuable insights that come with it. At the very least, it certainly beats putting yourself in a position later where you’re forced to give leadership duties to someone who’s “old enough”, but has hardly any relevant experience.
Be a mentor, not a boss.
As we said earlier, “because I said so” isn’t exactly a strong motivator for millennials. This new generation of doctors and nurses responds better to constructive coaching. So when one of them second-guesses your directions, don’t be offended—we can assure you, they’re not testing your authority. They simply want to know more about the reasons behind your methods, so use it as a teaching opportunity.
We understand that frequent second-guessing may be off-putting, especially to someone who’s used to employees who follow every order without question. But keep in mind, it shouldn’t be discouraged. Actually, it should be encouraged instead, because wanting to know the reasons behind why a rule exists displays valuable critical thinking skills. That’s rarely a bad thing.
Don’t fight the inevitable.
The millennials are coming, like it or not. The organizations that give them room to grow and flourish will naturally attract the best talent. The ones that ignore them in favor of the status quo will eventually fall by the wayside. How can you ensure your hospital is in the former group?
It’s simple: embrace them for what they are, and see each one of them as an opportunity to pass along your hard-earned wisdom. Answer tough questions instead of avoiding them, even if they’re on a subject that’s controversial. Build a culture of inclusion where everyone’s ideas and viewpoints are valued, no matter how old or experienced they are.
In short, give respect to get respect.
Because after all, the knock on millennials is that they are overly ambitious, too unafraid of failure, and eager to second-guess everything they know. But when you think about it, aren’t those the traits we want in our next generation of leaders?
The information in this article originally appeared on Nurse.com. To read the original article, click here.