The Millennial Touch 

The Midas Millennial Touch 

Nicole Griffiths and Nichola Gold

Through the Lens of HR Spice

The ‘M’ word, the Net Generation, Gen Y – whatever your nickname and whatever your opinion, the Millennial Generation have sparked and led a revolution in the world of business, one that aligns itself with coaching, development, purpose, strengths and communication.

Thanks to the different approach needed to motivate this generation, in the context of employee engagement, the term ‘management’ is being pushed aside by the need and rise of leadership.  This fundamental change brings a new approach, an exciting way in which to drive success in the business world.

Millennials are looking for a coach not a manager.  They want aa person that will bring out the best in them, challenge them, guide them, question them, involve them, encourage them and take them on a journey.  The lines between work and life have become blurred and this has led to a shift in focus.  Job satisfaction alone is less important for this generation.  Their emphasis is on personal development and continuous improvement.  The table below outlines this change in focus:

Past   Future
My Manager   My Coach
My Job   My Purpose
Job Satisfaction   Personal Development
Annual Review   Coaching Conversations
My Weaknesses   My Strengths

However, having a purpose at work and feeling ‘valued and involved’ is still one of the most important drivers of engagement for all staff.  Businesses that are embracing this change in focus continually ensure that their staff:

  • Feel involved in decision making
  • Have the freedom to voice ideas, which are heard and actioned
  • Feel enabled to perform well
  • Have opportunities to develop the job and themselves
  • Feel the business is concerned for their health and wellbeing

Another area where the shift from management to coaching can be clearly seen is in the performance review space.  Forward focused companies are replacing annual reviews with quarterly or even monthly ‘catch-ups’.  Ongoing conversations with a focus on the future and individuals’ strengths rather than weaknesses have now become more the norm.  These conversations have started to replace the more traditional, formal evaluations and judgement based reviews which tended to focus on past performance and weaknesses.  These days true performance coaching is all about unlocking a person’s potential to maximise their own performance.  The focus is on helping people to learn rather than teaching them.  The modern manager has turned into a leader!

Even within the HR leadership community this change is evident.  Gone are the days of ‘Personnel’, and even the term ‘HR’ is becoming superseded by titles such as ‘GM of People and Performance’, ‘PX’ (People Experience), ‘Director of Happiness’ or even ‘Chief Happiness Officer’.  Whilst we might not personally be rebranding from Spice HR to Spice of Happiness, it is great to see that the wellness of people (not resources!) has become a priority in our people focused profession.

The shift has moved from:

Area/Subject As a Manager   To A Leader
Essence Stability   Change
Have Subordinates   Followers
Seek Objectives   Vision
Energy Control   Passion
Dynamic Reactive   Pro-active
Want Results   Achievement
Persuasion Tell   Sell
Style Transactional   Transformational
Truth Establish   Seek
Credit Take   Give
Blame Blame   Learn

The move in the business world from managing employees to coaching/leading your people continues to be an exciting journey and one we at Spice HR whole heartedly embrace.  Thanks Millennials, we owe you one!

Nicole Griffiths and Nichola Gold are Spice HR – helping you manage your people and their performance.

Knowing that people are anything but bland, Spice HR are here to help unlock the true “spiciness” of people – the key ingredient to NZ business. Whether it be by introducing employee handbooks, welcome and on-boarding, staff engagement surveys, performance management, health and safety, training and development, reward and recognition or wellness programmes, they tailor their services to suit your needs.

They offer a real and light-hearted solution to the harder side of people management by adding a fresh mix of ideas to spice things up. They get to the heart of the matter and resolve it, all the while making HR fun! When you need to go on a people flavour discovery, give them a call or visit to start the journey.