Millennials Are Lazy, Entitled & High Maintenance

Millennials

If you’re managing Millennials, you might just share these sentiments.

These are the areas I will discuss in the first two workshops at How to Effectively Manage Millennials.

I’ve worked with Millennials for almost 20 years in different capacities so I’ll share my knowledge and experience in understanding the largest generation in the workplace.

Sign up now for individual workshops or the entire series & use promo code “manage” for 25% off!

Hope to see you there!

The Case of the Disappearing Perks

poof

Poof. Free food, gym memberships and laundry service are disappearing from the startup culture. Why?

The bottom line: profitability rules. Pair that with a halt in venture funding and something has to give (or go in this case).

For a while, particularly in the Silicon Valley, VC’s and Angel Investors were investing left and right, but now the frequency has slowed down. It’s hard to speculate why because the reasons differ for each investor, but it’s the trend moving forward.

What effect will it have on the job market?

Retention. Expect an exodus of younger employees to larger companies, not so much because of the disappearing perks, but what “rewards” represent. In life, you don’t miss something until it’s gone. If you never had work perks, you don’t miss them. But if you have perks taken away from you, it leaves a bad taste in your mouth.

Couple this with the average job tenure of Millennials being 3 years (in my opinion it’s much less than that) and the startup bubble begins to burst.

Yet the grass isn’t always greener on the other side (ever turn grass over?). With a decline in entrepreneurship for young professionals it signals a smarter worker. Millennials want to have their cake and eat it too (who doesn’t?). Corporate jobs aren’t so bad as long as they don’t completely eliminate your personal life.

In an earlier post, I mentioned lifestyle is the new passion, which means work is a means to an end. Perks help, but ultimately things like: purpose, career advancement and a pay raise matter more.

This isn’t to say perks don’t help retain workers, they do. But on the bright side, companies with a strong mission/vision don’t need them as badly to keep talent around. Admit it, luxury items such as perks come and go through cycles, but stripped down to the core: meaningful work matters most.

How To Effectively Manage Millennials: A 6 Week Workshop

generational-conflict

Starting Mid-June I’ll be hosting a 6-week workshop on: How to Effectively Manage Millennials.

Prior to that I plan to host a couple of free webinars with more information on the topics I’ll be covering, so stay tuned.

The workshops will be held in Santa Monica and geared towards anyone who manages Millennials.

The beauty of the in-person workshops will include the rich local network and collaboration of other professionals in the area. When it comes to leading effectively, there’s strength in numbers.

Why Career Coaches Don’t Make Money

broke

Perception is reality. Not all the time, but most of it.

Anyone can be a career coach. There’s no certification for it. In fact, most career coaches barely make any money doing it. Here’s why:

Prospecting clients is like identifying new car buyers. You can’t really convince someone they need it, you just have to be visible when people are looking for it. Career coaches can’t talk you into something you don’t want to do. They can just lay out their process and instill the confidence they can deliver your desired result. That’s it.

The irony is the people who need it most are usually broke or unemployed. The service shouldn’t be cheap (if it is I would question the credibility). Clients who benefit from it the most are usually older or further along in their career. If you’re hiring a coach out of desperation, you’re better off hiring a temp agency. Career coaching is a personal and professional investment. It’s about teaching you the skills to find a job on your own, not do it for you. If any coach promises you a job after they work with you, they’re lying (unless they’re going to hire you themselves).

On the business side coaching individuals is not scalable. You’ll never have too many clients on your plate unless you’re connecting with companies who hire you as a transitional coach (aka helping clients as part of a severance package). The money isn’t in individuals, it’s in corporate. That’s why if you’re not charging a decent amount, you’re wasting your time.

Career coaches who are reading this probably hate me.

Prospective clients reading this probably knew this already.

Here’s the caveat: if you call yourself a career coach, stop. People are skeptical.

If you’re thinking about hiring a career coach do it based on two criteria: fit and confidence. If you two “click” consider working with them. Lastly, if you have the confidence after talking to your coach he/she can get you to where you want to be, pay them.

The reality is people are changing jobs almost every year.

Is hiring a career coach a good idea? Depends what your expectations are.

But if you’re thinking about calling yourself a career coach or are one, you better figure out another way to make money.

Millennials: The Argument For Separate Training

millennials

There’s been talk in HR circles that one of the most overrated and unnecessary training a company can do is for Millennials.

I understand the stance that people are people and what Millennials want: meaningful work, perks and work-life balance is what other generations want, but that misses the point.  Here’s why:

If current training programs are “doing the job,” why are Millennials leaving companies at a record pace?

Contrary to popular belief, Millennial training programs are not a threat to HR departments. Instead they are specialized bonus.

Think about it. From a Millennial worker’s perspective, the relationship with HR is one of cautious skepticism. Yes, HR is there for the employee’s benefit/rights, but it’s also HR’s primary function to protect the company it represents.

Knowing that, Millennial workers may take advice from HR with a grain of salt.

The definition of loyalty has changed. Millennials are loyal to people, not companies. That means if an outside trainer/consultant comes in and relates to younger workers better than current supervisors, both sides win. Most managers spend 50% of their time dealing with interpersonal conflict. Imagine how much time and money is saved when delegating leadership development.

Ultimately the goal is retention. It’s much more expensive to recruit, interview, hire, train, then fire an employee opposed to maintaining a strong career development program. Investing in Millennials produces better results and happier workers. The greatest lasting reward you can offer your younger employees is feeling: valued/appreciated. You can’t put a price tag on that.

Lastly, training Millennials is like marketing to them. You first have to understand what they want in order to reach them. The same dynamic happens in professional sports. Coaches who don’t relate to players can never get the desired results. Who the information is coming from is as important as what is being said. Millennials are unfiltered, which can be perceived as unprofessional, but truthful feedback is received well once genuine trust and care has been established.

Training Millennials is an art. This doesn’t mean HR can’t do it, but it’s time consuming and challenging. As much as Millennials love to collaborate, they prefer to do it amongst themselves. Clump them with the rest of the group and they’ll tune you out.

Why Artists Make Terrible Producers

coachella-2016

Listen up aspiring/current entrepreneurs.

Imagine you’re a singer. You don’t write the songs or create the music, you just sing the song. The producer on the other hand never performs on stage, but they definitely run to the bank every time you open your mouth.

Neither is better. Just different.

For some reason 9 years ago when I took the leap from working for a boss to being my own, I thought I had to be an artist. The irony is while being employed I was a much better conductor than performer. Why did I make the shift: ego, naivety, achievement-oriented? All of the above.

Most of us do one role really well and the other one not so much. In my case I love coaching individuals, I’ve gotten much better at speaking and heck I even wrote a book. But I got away from what I do best and makes the biggest impact.

The latter matters more than the former. I’m a huge believer in strengths. Figure out what you’re great at and do more of that. The artist in me strayed away from the advice I’ve been giving, but the producer is aiming to get it back.

What I love most is: leadership development. Most of the time it happens through an organized program. As much as I love being directly involved, the biggest impact happens when the effort is multiplied through other leaders (think Uber driver vs. Uber, the company).

In a society where personal branding is mainstream it’s hard to step behind-the-scenes. But if you’re truly a producer, want to scale your idea and desire greater impact the shift from artist to producer must happen.

So choose the role that better fits you: artist or producer. Then proceed and make sure to stay in your lane.

Communicating Effectively w/ Hannah Kulik

hannah-kulik

Hannah and I first connected as writers for Lake Show Life, a sports blog and have stayed in touch since. She’s a talented young writer who now contributes to Lakers Nation. It’s rare for someone her age to be a strong communicator, so I wanted her to share her journey with you. Hope you enjoy it!

When did you realize you had a love/passion for writing?

It is not so much that I have a passion for writing, it is more that I have a passion for the Lakers and basketball in general. However, I first realized I was a pretty good writer as a freshman in high school, when my English teacher would have me help him grade other students’ papers and work with them individually. My dad always stressed the importance of being a writer who is clear and concise, so that is definitely something that has stayed with me throughout my writing career.

What is your definition of communication and how do you improve yours?

To me, communication is the ability to express one’s thoughts and opinions in a clear and concise manner. In this age of expanding social media, I feel that the art of conversation is being lost and in particular the ability to talk to others face-­to-­face. There are times in life when communicating in writing is ineffective and you have to be able to speak to someone directly in order to get your point across. Whatever you do in life, and regardless of your job, in order to be successful you have to be an effective communicator and that takes practice.

What experiences so far have shaped your voice as a journalist?

For two seasons, I was a staff writer at Lake Show Life and wrote over 100 articles that were published. Some of my articles were also picked up by other outlets such as Bleacher Report and Chatsports. My writing improved dramatically during that time by virtue of the effort I put in to my articles and the careful way that I reviewed them before they were submitted. In the early stages, two of the editors, Jacob Rude and Valerie Morales took an interest in me and gave me helpful guidance to improve my writing. Recently, I started writing for Lakers Nation and have also been accepted to write for Dodger Blue. Working with different editors has been very valuable as it has enabled me to learn different styles and develop my own voice as a writer.

As a college student what skills do you expect to learn while in school vs. experience through a job/internship?

What I have learned from school so far is that every audience is different, and you need to be flexible in order to determine the most effective way to communicate with each person individually. Something I feel I am learning and expect to continue to keep learning both in school and through a job/internship is how to put myself in positions to meet and communicate with as many different people as possible. In my opinion, taking yourself out of your comfort zone and actively engaging in the large and diverse world that is “media” and “social media” will expose you to different styles and help mold what eventually will become your own way of communicating.

What advice do you have for people pursuing a career in communications?

My biggest piece of advice for anyone pursuing a career in communications is to develop relationships with as many diverse people as possible in environments that interest you. You never know who you may unexpectedly encounter, a person with influence who may take an interest in you and help shape your development. Also, always remember to stand tall, shake hands firmly, look people in the eye, and speak in a confident voice. It sounds simple but takes practice and experience until it becomes second nature.

When you are not writing, what are some activities that you like to do in your free time?

When I am not writing, I am either working out, listening to music (anything from hip hop to country), hosting makeup tutorials on YouTube, spending time with my family, reading, or cooking!

Why Settling Is Worse Than Failure

directv-settlers

A slow death…that’s what it feels like.

Settling is accepting lower standards for yourself. If you’ve stayed at a job years past when you said you’d quit, you’re settling.

At least with failure it means you tried something and the result didn’t turn out the way you wanted it to. The key differentiator here is: you tried.

The most successful people in this world fail more than you do. You only hear about their success stories because failure isn’t inspiring. Truth is in order to succeed, you have to risk failing. That means trying is better than settling.

Settling is waving the white flag. It says, “I give up.” It’s the belief that you’re a victim and you deserve less in life. The mind is a powerful thing and when you allow it to dwell in past regrets it freezes over.

If you’re feeling stuck in any part of your life right now, ask yourself this question: “Would I rather risk failure and try or live with regret for the rest of my life?

No risk, no reward. If you don’t try, there’s a zero percent chance you can succeed. Settling is essentially telling yourself, “I can’t.” Once you believe that it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Never settle.

Chief People Officer: Going Beyond HR

chief-people-officer

If you haven’t seen this title before, get used to it.

The days of HR handling everything people-related are over. This isn’t throwing shade at what HR does, instead it reveals a needed addition to organizations.

People are the most important asset to your company. In the book, Human Sigma, the customer-employee encounter determines your bottom line. Translation: take care of your employees and they’ll take care of your customers.

That’s where the Chief People Office originated. A while back companies like Google and Zappos realized culture affects performance most so they put in resources such as: life coaches, free meals and gym memberships to decrease stress/distraction while increasing efficiency.

No matter what industry your company is in, the right people systems must be in place. Most organizations spend money on recruiting, interviewing and on-boarding, but neglect workers once they complete their probationary period.

News flash: that’s about as archaic as scratching records as a DJ or backwards-thinking as looking in your rear view mirror while driving. The recession is over. Training is not a luxury anymore.

Richard Branson said “Train people well enough so they can leave. Treat them well enough so they don’t want to.

If you don’t take care of your people, they’ll leave. There’s always better options available.

Having a Chief People Officer in your company shows people are valued. No organization is perfect, but the better you are treated, the more tolerant you become towards mistakes.

Look up Chief People Officer positions and tell me what you think. It’s a sign companies are moving in the right direction.