I recently had my second grandchild and it got me thinking about the days when I was raising my own kids. I remember the days of running from soccer practice, to basketball practice, to dance class, to scouts, not to mention the scheduled play dates. Looking at my grandchildren now, I can already see how, like my own kids, their time is way more scheduled than it certainly was for me growing up. My parents had little to do with my daily goings on, other than making sure I was safe, I did my homework, and got to bed at a reasonable hour or at least I was quiet in my room at a reasonable hour. Little did they know I was watching Johnny Carson every night till 1:00AM. Oh, he was the guy before Jay Leno, who was the guy before Jimmy Fallon.
The Millennial Generation is used to their parents being way more engaged than any other generation’s parents were. Just go out on the sports fields. How many Mons are there? How many dads? People are working 24/7 yet they make time to get to their children’s evens when at all possible. How important these children feel. How loved. Bravo.
Could there possibly be a negative to this? It’s hard to imagine an adverse effect and I don’t actually think it is an adverse effect, but something we should be aware of when managing Millennials. Think about what these kids are used to; immediate feedback on their performance….. trophies whether they win or lose……constant direction as to what comes next, etc. Fast forward to when they get to the workforce; what do you think is important to them?
You’ve heard about helicopter parents; the kinds who hover over their children to make sure everything goes the way they think it should. Well that may be what your Millennials are looking for. It may be a little annoying to someone from one of the older generations, but to manage Millennials, you will be more successful if you are more engaged with them. Foster an atmosphere of collaboration; one where they can give their opinion and it matters. They want to know how they are doing, so tell them. Yes, they like to have fun, but unlike their reputation of being “entitled,” they are actually hard workers who like to please, so take advantage of that. Throw out the compliments whenever possible. Give the trophies and before you know it you’ll have a team of all stars!
Thoughts…….. Contact me at abbe@TECResourceCenter.com
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