Want to Recruit Gen-Y – and Have Them Run Through Walls for You?

Feb 16, 2011   //   by Bradley Short   //   Blog, Company Culture  //  No Comments

Generation-Y is entering, or just entered, the workforce; are you ready for it?

Recruiting top-notch Gen-Y employees is and will be vital to your business’s success. Speaking as a Gen-Yer myself, I can say that we are motivated quite differently than the workers that came before us are.

We are innovative, technologically connected, well educated and thoughtful. Though our appearances may make some think that we’re lazy or sloppy, we’re also actually quite ambitious.  However, we expect our employers to be trustworthy, community-focused, and responsible, especially with regard to the environment, if we are to perform to our fullest potential.  The companies that cater to our unique motivations and expectations will become the most desirable companies to work for (and buy from).  They’ll be able to recruit (and retain) the very best talent that Gen-Y has to offer.

The key to understanding Gen-Y can be found in the Three Cs: Community, Credibility, and CSR (corporate social responsibility).  In the next few posts we will consider what each of them means for organizations.

Community:  Moving from the soccer field to the workplace

Gen-Yers want to “be a part” of your organization rather than “work for” you. We have strong senses of self and want our careers to stay in line with our personal brands.  We are idealistic and need to know that our actions are creating real value for the world around us.  Don’t expect a Gen-Yer to become a different person for a job, rather, help us realize how our career is both purposeful and exciting.  We also realize that business doesn’t take place in a vacuum.  Our company’s actions have a real impact on the world around us, so we need to know that we are truly working for something good.

We tend to work in group settings but need to own our individual accomplishments.  That is, we want to maintain our individuality while knowing that we’re working together towards a particular goal. Open collaboration, group whiteboard brainstorming sessions, and collective strategizing are in our post-college DNA.  This being said, remember that we still want to be recognized for what we do ourselves.

Make your company the team we want to be on

By showing Gen-Yers that working for your company means being a part of a dynamic community, you’ll attract top talent that will be the envy of your competitors.  In our next post, we’ll share insights from Jason Ryan Dorsey, “The Gen Y Guy” on how Generation-Y values the second of the Three Cs: Credibility.