The Next Generation of Your Business, Chapter 2

By JackApril 13, 2016

– This article was last updated on 19 July 2021-

This is the second of two posts on how accommodating millennials’ priorities in the workplace can make it better for all employees. Last time, we covered the importance of streamlining processes like expense management and providing a collaborative management style. Now we turn to two other commonly mentioned desires: values and flexibility.

Young millennials meeting at office and discussing together a new startup project.

The Values-Friendly Office

A lot of millennials say they want to contribute positively to the world through their work, but they can hardly all expect to find jobs in the nonprofit sector (nor would they all be able to pay the bills on them if they could). Still they say want their work to reflect their values, so what’s a widget-maker to do? Create extracurriculars.

There are many creative ways that a business can allow employees to feel that they are making a positive impact: Arrange days when the whole company volunteers for an organisation that fights hunger or works as a group to clean up local public spaces. Forming partnerships with local nonprofits can let you offer employees choices in their volunteerism.  If you can manage it, query employees about their charitable interests or values and create opportunities for them. Is your office full of animal lovers? Offer a few days per year when employees can volunteer for a shelter or make donations in the company’s name to animal-rights groups.

Any of these efforts will contribute to team building and have staff feeling that they don’t have to leave their “selves” at the door when they come to work.

Offer Flexibility

You’ve no doubt heard this one before, but if you haven’t started looking at implementing it, you are definitely going to be down on the list of desirable employers. Whether you allow a weekly respite from a commute or flexible hours, employees will appreciate the effort and are more likely to be highly productive in the hours they spend working.

Some companies have gone so far as to scrap limited time off, with staff allowed to take time as they need it. Even if a company can’t go quite that far, demonstrating trust helps create the conditions that workers need to be willing to go above and beyond.