The NADA show’s wide variety of educational workshops and guest speakers never fails to disappoint, and this year’s virtual show was certainly no exception.

On the last day of NADA, I attended an insightful workshop called “Build Millennials and Gen Z’ers Into Your Highest Performers” presented by Jared Hamilton from DrivingSales. This session covered how dealerships can attract, engage, and grow millennial and Gen Z talent into high-performing employees in the industry. Millennials began entering the workforce in the late 1990s and they make up most of the workforce today. Gen Z was born between 1995-2010 and is entering the workforce now with an emerging boom — they make up an estimated number of 61 million job seekers!

To manage next-gen employees, you need to be able to understand their goals, aspirations and motives. Most of these professionals are motivated by knowing their work is valued and making an impact on their industry. Gen Z is characterized as demographic of hard workers who take responsibility for achieving their career goals through a competitive mindset and thrive on constructive feedback. This generation values opportunities for career advancement, skill development and diversity in the workplace. They’re also more likely to be loyal to organizations with a clear path for growth and positive workplace culture.

Hamilton’s top two steps to motivate your millennial and Gen Z employees are:

1)  Provide a career path, so employees know what they can achieve at your organization
2)  Implement a monthly scorecard and review process, so each employee knows what is expected of them and can develop a plan to improve

Visible Career Paths Lead to Loyal Employees

It’s important for managers to clearly demonstrate the growth opportunities within their company and encourage millennial and Gen Z employees to see their role as an investment for their future. According to Hamilton’s research, 87% of millennials expect a career path, 76% require professional development training, and 66% thrive off of regular feedback. How to Build Millennials

To get maximum results from millennials, managers should create a roadmap for career development and growth throughout the company. One way to create a roadmap is to show the employee a path to success, along with the training and performance goals they need to achieve to advance.

How to Build MillennialsLet’s use a staircase as an example of a career roadmap for a dealership sales consultant. Each step requires a new set of competencies in order to advance. Setting a career growth roadmap gives your employees a sense of longevity and a goal worth striving for.

Continued Professional Training and Benefits of a Mentor

According to the presentation, 76% of the respondents stated they require additional training to maintain self-improvement. Continued training programs allow managers to more accurately evaluate their employee’s performance levels. This helps create a higher standard of efficient performance.

You should also pair newer employees with mentors. This helps create good work habits and a comfortable learning environment. Millennial and Gen Z employees appreciate leaders who are approachable, reliable, honest with their feedback and represent themselves and the company well. The mentor training period should be targeted around a month time frame, but this can be flexible based on your needs.

Increase the Frequency of Constructive Feedback

Millennials and Gen Z differ when it comes to receiving feedback. According to the presentation, 66% of Gen Z feel that feedback from their supervisors at least a few times a week is a key factor in building confidence in their new roles. Millennials do not require the same level of feedback.

Gen Z grew up in fully submersed digital environments and is used to real-time feedback likes, comments, shares, etc. With this understanding, it’s easy to see that they would respond better to a higher level of affirmation and guidance through constructive feedback based on their strengths and weaknesses. These feedback reviews should be brief and occur about three times a week for five minutes .

In addition to feedback meetings, you should also have a monthly formal feedback process with metrics. These metrics should then be measured by a performance rate of 0-5 stars. Monthly feedback meetings should have an agenda of measure, analyze, plan, and implement. First, measure the employee’s performance in terms of the provided metrics. Then, analyze the data and diagnose strengths and weaknesses of the month. By identifying these strengths and weaknesses, the manager and employee can create a plan for growth and improvement. After the meeting, the next step is to ensure each employee is implementing their plan into skill development and career advancement. How to Build Millennials

Capitalize on Gen Z’s Competitive Drive

According to the presentation, 76% of Gen Z professionals describe themselves as responsible for driving their own career and they are willing to work longer hours to achieve their goals. To motivate your Gen Z employees to perform their best, take advantage of their competitive drive. Publishing scorecards for employees in the same department and encouraging one another to compete toward improvement is a great way to encourage teamwork. Using scorecards like this can help a company determine who their highest performing employees are and capitalize on their success.

Implementing new habits in the workplace can be difficult. The easiest way to ensure performance meetings translate to success is to attach the new habit to an old habit. For example, complete the feedback scorecard after the first paycheck each month or for one week’s one-on-one meeting.

Final Thoughts

When preparing for the wave of next-generation employees, remember that Gen Z and millennials are simple to manage. They thrive with visible career paths designed to increase their longevity and loyalty to the company. They need continued training to feel valued as an employee and confident in their skills. With frequent feedback and motivation, these young employees will adapt to a full-time working lifestyle and learn which work habits will lead to success, personal growth, and career advancement.

Authored on Fri, 02/26/2021 - 15:21