Millennials is a term that groups people that are born between the year 1980 to 2000. Millennials are said to have developed unique characteristics from their doting parents, lifestyle and contact with diverse people. They are very different from Gen-Xs and the Baby Boomers, and expectations and goals are also different. These also translate to differences in how they work.

Some characteristics to note about Millennials:
– Used to working in teams
– Likes to make friends and socialise at work
– Keen to receive feedback about how they are performing at work
– Seeks leadership & structure
– Shuns from boredom or routine work
– Seeks for flexibility and a work-life-balance

Many managers often find that Millennials are hard to manage due to their unique characteristics. Fret not, read this article for some tips on how to effectively manage these Millennials at work.

1. Provide leadership & guidance

Spend time teaching and coaching them, and provide them with timely feedback on their progress.

2. Work in teams

Millennials believe in team success and enjoy working in teams. Take advantage of this and encourage teamwork.

3. Listen to them

Millennials want their ideas and opinions to be heard and not ignored. If you reject their idea, explain why their idea is rejected and how they can improve.

4. Work-life balance

Despite having high emphasis on Work-life balance, Millennials are very committed and hardworking workers. If possible, provide for flexible work arrangements so Millennials can properly manage their time themselves without affecting their work.

5. Fun work environment

Millennials enjoy their work and are often committed in the workplace. As managers, plan for out-of-work activities, celebrate birthdays or simply care for them as friends instead of just subordinates. Once Millennials get that sense of belonging in the organisation, they will not leave easily.
That said, everyone is different and the tips above may work for some employees while others may not take to it. One unchanging rule as a manager is to understand your staff and their characteristics. Bear in mind that when you groom the Millennials, you are the role model that will affect how they manage the next generation of workers.


Founded in 1956, the Management Development Institute of Singapore (MDIS) is Singapore’s oldest not-for-profit professional institute for lifelong learning. MDIS has two main subsidiaries: Management Development Institute of Singapore Pte Ltd which oversees its Singapore academic operations, and MDIS International Pte Ltd which focuses on MDIS’ globalisation strategy. MDIS offers internationally-accredited courses in Business and Management, Engineering, Fashion and Jewellery Design, Health and Nursing, Information Technology, Languages and Education, Life Sciences, Media and Communications, Psychology, Tourism and Hospitality Management, and Safety and Environmental Management. These programmes are offered in collaboration with renowned universities in the United Kingdom.

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