YPLS 3 | Value 1 of 6 That Millennials Must Experience

In YPLS #1 we talked about there being two components that will determine our level of effectiveness when it comes to leading millennials.

They were:

  1. Ensuring that your millennials experience six core values.
  2. Execute specific strategies when it comes to attracting, developing and retaining millennials.

Then in YPLS #2 we talked about the one thing you must get right if you want to be successful when leading millennials. For if you don’t get this one thing right then it doesn’t matter if you have access to the best strategies out there… They’ll never produce optimal results.

Now the reason I bring these first two posts up again is because they’re the foundation for we’ll be building on throughout this series.

They also lead us into the third post. The focus of which, will be on the first of the six values that millennials must experience if you want to attract, develop and retain them.

So let’s get into it.

The first of the six values that millennials must experience is…

Growth

Now take a moment and think back to the times in your career where you felt at your best. Where you experienced the greatest levels of fulfillment and reward. The times in your career where you were most happy.

As you’re thinking back to these times what was the one constant?

Correct me if I’m wrong but I’d be willing to bet that there was some form of growth taking place, right?

This is important to recognize because it’s the times we experience growth throughout our careers where we’re feeling at our best.

Thus the reason why if you want to attract and retain today’s young pros, you have to create an environment that fosters growth. For its their level of growth that significantly impacts their quality of experience at your companies. It also determines your ability to retain millennials and you’ll see why I say this as we progress through the series.

The Process

I’ve found that one of the most effective ways to ensure that millennials experience growth involves taking them through the following process:

  1. Help them create a compelling vision.
  2. Connect them with a purpose that becomes an obsession.
  3. Identify the skills, beliefs and behaviors that will lead them to becoming top performers.
  4. Have them deliberately practice these skills, beliefs and behaviors every day.
  5. Hold them accountable to giving the “perfect effort”.

Let’s go through this in more depth to understand how it all plays out.

1. Help them create a compelling vision.

Anytime we see a millennial jumping from job to job it’s likely that they’re lacking a compelling vision.

To put it another way, they’re lost. They’re trying to find something. Oftentimes they’re trying to “find their passion.”

But here’s the thing…

This whole idea of “finding your passion” is one of the most dangerous pieces of career advice we could ever give them.

The reason being that passion isn’t something that they’re just going to find and then keep. Instead, it’s something that needs to be consciously created and then cultivated every day. Case in point, just look at all those who jump from job to job hoping that someday they’ll stumble upon their passion.

Do they find it?

Rarely.

Now think about those who are completely obsessed and love what they do.

If you interview and/or study these people you’ll come to find that they consciously created a compelling vision. Further, they fully committed to taking the necessary actions each day to realize that vision.

The reason I’m sharing this with you is because I’ve been there. I’ve spent years trying to “find my passion” and all it did was lead to confusion and overwhelm.

However, the day I made the decision to create a compelling vision for my career was the day where it all started to make sense… I achieved clarity. For I came to realize that I’d never have to worry about finding my passion if I was in constantly in pursuit of realizing a vision that excited me.

So you have two options.

Option #1: You can do nothing leaving it up to your millennials to figure out how to navigate the early years of their careers on their own.

Option #2: You can define what it truly means to be a leader by helping your millennials create a compelling vision for their careers.

For those who choose the latter, you’ll want to reference YPLS Post #2 because within this post you’ll see a tool titled “Model of Excellence”.

I bring this up for two reasons:

  1. There’s an exercise within the tool that will help your young pros create a compelling vision.
  2. This exercise is then followed up by a series of other exercises that will give your millennials the leverage to produce at optimal levels early on in their careers.

So as mentioned earlier, anytime we see a millennial jumping from job to job it’s likely that they’re lacking a compelling vision. That’s why the first step in this process is vital. It’s not only going to benefit your millennials but it’s also going to help you attract, develop and retain them.

This leads us to step number two…

2. Connect them with a purpose that becomes an obsession.

So now that we’ve covered the importance of helping your millennials create a compelling vision (along with teaching them how to do it) you must help them connect with a purpose that becomes an obsession. A purpose that’s going to “pull” them through the times of challenge while in pursuit of realizing their vision.

While simple in theory this is where many struggle; myself included.

In the past I used to always think that this or that was my purpose but if I was being real with myself, they were just words. I knew this to be true because I never really owned these purposes. To put it another way, I didn’t consciously work on turning them into an obsession.

Now I know that the word “obsession” has a negative meaning to some.

However, I’ve come to learn that there’s nothing wrong with having an obsession if the intention is pure and it creates good for others. Not to mention, in order to accomplish anything of significance throughout our careers we must be obsessed.

So the question becomes how do you help your millennials design their purpose?

The first thing that’s important to recognize is that we can’t force a purpose on them. In order for their purpose to become an obsession they must design their own.

That being said, this doesn’t mean that we can’t support them in the process.

In fact, I highly recommend it.

The reason being that you know the impact your product and/or service has in the lives of your clients and customers. And it’s this impact that’s going to play an important role in helping your millennials design their purpose.

As for how they’ll turn their purpose into an obsession, it’s pretty simple. All they need to do is internalize it and one of the most effective ways to do this is through conditioning.

Examples of conditioning could include:

  • Reviewing and/or writing their purpose down throughout the day.
  • Incanting and/or visualizing their purpose throughout the day.

There are a number of different ways to condition purpose. Your millennials just need to find the best method for them and then leverage it consistently… It needs to be done every day. At least two to three times a day.

The reason being that for their purpose to become an obsession it needs to become a part of their identify. It needs to become a part of who they think they are.

So we’ve now covered the first two steps which will help your young pros experience growth. Next up is step three…

3. Identify the skills, beliefs and behaviors that will lead them to becoming top performers.

This is another critical component of the process.

I say this because it’s a millennials development in these areas of skill, belief and behavior that create the greatest levels of growth.

Now we’re not going to get into depth here as this will be covered in more detail in a future post.

However, if you’re interested in helping your millennials gain clarity on the beliefs and behaviors they need to develop in order to become a top performer in your industry go check out YPLS #2.

Next up is step number four…

4. Have them deliberately practice these skills, beliefs and behaviors every day.

Similar to the step number three, we’re going to take this into more depth in future posts.

In fact, there’s going to be a section of this series that’s solely focused on best practices when it comes to developing millennials.

That being said, what’s important to recognize is that one of the most effective ways to ensure that your young pros experience growth is through skill development and conditioning of their psychology. This comes back to the fact that the traditional educational system doesn’t teach us the skills, beliefs and behaviors required to excel in our careers.

Therefore, it’s on us to make this happen, which leads us into step number five…

5. Hold them accountable to giving the “perfect effort”.

Holding your millennials accountable is a must. Not only for their results but just as (if not more) importantly for their effort; at least in the beginning.

Here’s why I say this.

If you look back to steps three and four the focus was on having your young pros identify and then deliberately practice the skills, beliefs and behaviors that will help them become top performers. Well given that these skills, beliefs and behaviors will take time to develop we have to get them focused on giving the “perfect effort”.

Note: I’m not saying that results aren’t important. They are. In fact, they’re most important.

But…

Your millennials will never be able to produce optimal results if they haven’t developed the appropriate skills, beliefs and behaviors first.

Again, many have not been taught this as they enter their careers because this is not a part of the curriculum in the traditional educational system.

That’s why holding them accountable to giving the “perfect effort” is a must. The fact of the matter is that they’re never going to be able to fully control the outcomes achieved throughout their careers. However, the one thing they can always control is giving the “perfect effort.”

This is important to recognize because when your young pros give this effort they’ll improve the probability of achieving their desired outcomes.

So there’s a choice to make.

Either you can focus on holding your young pros accountable for their results and nothing else or you can focus on holding them accountable to giving the “perfect effort”.

Speaking from experience, one will create frustration while the other not only creates results but trust and loyalty.

Close

Alright. We just covered one of the most effective ways to help millennials experience growth.

All it comes down to is this very simple and easy process:

  1. Help them create a compelling vision.
  2. Connect them with a purpose that becomes an obsession.
  3. Identify the skills, beliefs and behaviors that will lead them to becoming top performers.
  4. Have them deliberately practice these skills, beliefs and behaviors every day.
  5. Hold them accountable to giving the “perfect effort”.

A part of me is surprised that more people aren’t talking about this. I mean, here we have all these “experts” saying that the key to making millennials more productive is food, movie outings and team building activities. While I understand the intent behind these strategies, they’ll never come close to producing the results you’ll get when you put your millennials in a position to consistently achieve new levels of growth.

That’s why the focus of this post was on giving you the most effective process to make this happen.

So that’s just the first of the six values. Over the next couple months we’ll be covering the other five values that will help you attract, develop and retain the top young talent in your industry.

With that being said that concludes YPLS #3.


Should you know of other business owners, executives, etc. that lead millennials it’d mean a lot if you shared this with them. The reason being that many are still looking for the answers when it comes to leading millennials.

Understandably so…

There’s a lot of fluff being produced about the generation. If only they’d come to understand that millennials really aren’t that different from any other generation they would quickly solve most of the problems they’re currently facing.