Leadership Styles for The Millennial Generation | AboutLeaders.com

Leadership Styles

Adapting leadership styles to address the needs and qualities of followers is one of the main components of effective transformational leadership.

The millennial generation, also referred to as generation Y, is the latest emerging group of employees. These are people born between 1980 – 2000 and are different from generation X that preceded them.

Today, the generational issues have taken a different role in the society making them more significant. There are several ways in which this generation differs from its predecessors.

Technology and Millennials

Millennials are uniquely familiar with technology since they grew up with iPhones, PCs, and the Internet.

They do not resist, but rather embrace the latest technologies. Additionally, they are interconnected and may become well known in social media channels since they spend plenty of their time online tweeting, texting, and posting. Millennials are seldom alone, are networked, and can collaborate without fear of asking others for assistance.

Collaborative Employees

Millennials want to be heard and do not want their ideas to be ignored.

They like being part of decisions and are not believers of authority or hierarchy, and love environments that are fun to work in. The job market is tough and millennials have realized the need to be innovative, flexible, and creative to support the organizations they work in.

Many organizations have realized Millennial’s needs and are now creating employee centered environments to attract them and retain their skills and talents.

So how does one lead and manage this group successfully?

Business Advantage

The first thing a leader needs to do is realize how creative and good this age group is at multi-tasking.

However, Millennials need structure for their technological expertise and ability to work as a team to become a business advantage. Millennials are idealistic and have a clear picture of what kind of leaders they want. They want a hero that is fair and has integrity as well as concern about individual employee situations. Knowing how to lead them will be the key of succeeding in the future.

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Leading Millennials

Learning how to evaluate the performance of the business, utilize direct resources, plan projects, and communicate effectively will be invaluable.

Every company needs a good leader who knows how to organize resources, space, materials, money, and time proficiently. The leader will be able to find solutions that are creative and steer Millennial staff in a direction that is positive. A Masters degree in Human Resources or Business Management would be a wise investment towards helping leaders know how to best lead Millennials.

Positive Outcomes

Leaders of Millennials will have to sell his or her ideas and take actions that are positive with minimal risks.

Leaders have to work to unite Millennials and show them how to have positive project outcomes. In this way leaders can also gain learning experiences. For example, leaders will be learning how to think analytically, make decisions and communicate in a way the Millennial generation will understand. In the same way leaders can minimize their weaknesses.

If leaders focuses on roles of individuals, he or she can maximize efforts of every member on the team. Whatever the size of the team, the leader will assume responsibility of elevating contributions so the goals of the company will be achieved.

Leading Millennials may be the new frontier in management, but it is one that needs to be conquered if you intend to stay at the top of the leadership pyramid.

How Are You Adapting Your Leadership Styles?

If you have ideas you feel like sharing that might be helpful to readers, share them in the comments section below. Thanks!

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Blair Crawford

Blair is an emerging marketing and social media talent valuing innovation, hard work, and a relentless approach to creating value for clients and stakeholders. She can be reached on Twitter at @blair_crawford.

  • Ramdeo Choudhary

    Millennials are mostly assertive individuals and not persons. The role of a leader is how to make them a person and side by side meeting their expectations and helping them to realise the interconnectivitywith each other. The role of a leader today in dealing with the millennials is two fold, first how to get maximum value contribution through active engagements with millenials and secondly how to convert them as persons in the largest context. Once we keep both the objectives there can be a transformational change in the society as a whole with the limited purpose of maximising profit and growth being met with success. If we do not do the millenials as individuals will always remain self centred always willing to collide with each other as billiard balls. A leader therefore has to have the trait of a person, he should thoroughly undergo himself the process of transformation through training as person and change his position from individuality to a personality. An individual always strives to find a right place for himself whereas a person finds the right place for others and by virtue of that he is called a leader to lead the millennials.

  • Although Millenials are supposedly be creative and innovative I have found they lack of engagement and focus.
    Personally I have struggled to cover some analist vacants, I have tested around 15 young recently graduated professionals to find only 3 suitable for the positions. Given is an entry level high technical background is not required, I look for attitude, engagement and responsibility, which apparently is difficult to find.

  • Stephen Rayfield

    How typical of the Millennials to say how leaders have to adapted to them. When do they take the responsibility to adapt to the leaders style?

  • Millennials + Innovation + Structure = Productive Organizational Effectiveness

  • God, don’t plan a business that will support people’s lives around assumptions of Generational traits.
    It’s glib nonsense. The span of human personalities is the same. Even “life experience” (growing up in a tech era, growing up in a hard time, born in a war etc.) will not explain the person — it’s but noe sliver of their whole being. You must get to know that person as an individual, respected for who they are, not for their birth date. Forget Generation W or whatever else. It’s marketing spin.

  • Ramdeo. Choudhary

    Every age has a pattern of life and living unique from the previous one. There is nothing like glib nonsense in accepting this fact. But it will be a bigger glib nonsense if we discriminate individuals by their birth or colour or religion. It is also true that these traits are one sliver their whole being to which the commentator at least agrees. The whole purpose of the author, I suppose, is to respect those wholeness in all beings and make an honest effort to make them change individualistic traits and embrace their personality traits for their personal and professional well being and also to enable them through the process to contribute effectively in the organisation they serve out of their desire and willingness and mere compulsion.

  • Millennials are not good at multi-tasking because it isn’t possible. In spite of what we may want to believe, the brain is not digital. It is just an analog device that can only deal with one bit at a time.

    What Millennials can do better than the generations before them is switch from one bit to another very quickly. Some researchers suggest that growing up with digital devices changed the wiring in their brains to allow this fast shifting. It does not allow them to do two things at once though.

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