If there is one question that just about every business leader is asking today, it’s how to connect with the millennial generation. This generation — now the largest in America —communicates much differently from its predecessors (Gen Y and the Baby Boomers), as they are ultra-connected, technology-driven, and intent on disrupting many of the business practices that they see as tired and inefficient.
Engaging The Millennial Generation
Businesses that can successfully learn to communicate with Millennials stand a much better chance of attracting top young talent and winning over new contracts. Millennials, after all, are now starting to assume spending power in the enterprise and so it’s vital to accommodate their preferences and needs.
So, how should your business communicate with Millennials? Here are some of the essential tools that you should be using:
One of the biggest changes that Millennials have brought to the workplace is the demand for remote work. Millennials today want the flexibility to work on their terms — from where they want, when they want. Businesses are therefore challenged to find ways of accommodating this new business model without sacrificing productivity or communication. Video conferencing is a technology that can help tremendously; it allows businesses to hold high-quality face-to-face meetings and collaborate on projects in real-time without having to be physically present.
Another stumbling block for remote work environments is that it can be hard to track people down when you need to get in touch with them. Workers are likely to get up and walk away from their computers at random times, leaving team members waiting for replies. This can be very detrimental to business operations. Presence technology, when used in conjunction with a Unified Communications system, can solve this problem. Presence technology lets workers see exactly when other team members are present and open for discussion or engaged in other activities.
Millennials were the first generation to grow up completely immersed in instant messaging. First, there was AOL Instant Messenger and SMS, and later services like Facebook Messenger, iChat, WhatsApp, and more. Millennials are used to being able to quickly and easily send messages instead of making phone calls. And now, they expect to have instant messaging options in the workplace for lightning-fast communication.
As you explore the above solutions, don’t abandon your traditional office communications technologies like your landline phones. There is a time and a place for every type of communication, and sometimes the best way to solve a business issue is to have an old-fashioned conversation over the phone. Millennials are big on brand engagement and will make their opinions known over the internet and social media when they feel strongly about a brand in one way or another. So make sure your employees, both on-site and remote, have access to reliable phone systems with comfortable handsets and know their audience.