How do you think a small businesses transform into mega empires?
The success of any business does not depend on the product alone. While a great team can sell pretty much anything, your business demands that you bring together the right kind of talent to build your brand for long-term success.
Thus, Begins the Talent War
McKinsey’s Steven Hankin in 1997 coined the term ‘war for talent’ referring to fierce competition to attract and retain employees. This comes especially at a time when millennial talent is quickly replacing the last of the baby boomers who are now departing workforces across economies.
While top leadership is inclined to lean on the baby boomers, millennials are expected to make up 75% of the global workforce by 2025. This transition of power between generations is anything but new.
Baby Boomers Vs. Millennials
There are conflicting views in the approach to work and the communication between generations which is largely a result of style rather than substance.
For example, millennials prefer texting to phone calls and wear informal attire to work. Their attitude to work hours is more relaxed and they are a little less concerned about when and where the job gets done. Reports say that millennials are a flexible lot who are more adaptable to job changes with 60% of the workforce being open to new opportunities.
Businesses too are taking cue and shaping their strategies to draw talent. Primary strategies include effective design, diversity and sustainable spaces allowing the millennials opportunities to strike a perfect work-life balance.
And Then There Is the Wish list
Millennials are a unique cohort, mostly viewed as a generation of job-hopping, free, narcissistic, preoccupied and lethargic lot. Nonetheless, they have their own set of expectations regarding their workplace.
Gone are the days when compensation was the defining feature of attracting talent. Today, millennials seek a corporate culture coupled with a management style that is beyond transactional.
They are social creatures and expect their workplace to put themselves forward in the social context too. Harvard Business Review published a study which stated that, “employees who engage in online social interactions with co-workers through social media tend to be more motivated and come up with innovative ideas.”
And that’s not where it ends. Millennials expect real-time, honest feedback and recognition for the work that they do. And they wish to pass on their thoughts to the business too. Plus, they look to constantly upgrade their skills and they demand equal participation and contribution towards this initiative from their employers.
Keeping their wish list in mind, employers too are rapidly changing their strategies, workstyle and workplace design, adapting to the growing needs of their workforce.
Defining a Positive Workspace Culture
The key to bringing your employees together and keeping them engaged with the business is to have a well-defined workplace culture. And office design plays a crucial part here.
The design of an office space impacts the health of its occupants, says a report from the World Health Building Council. So, it’s time to ditch the doldrums and inject some fun.
1. Create an Enjoyable Space:
While employees of bigger corporates have access to ping-pong balls and climb walls. Even if you don’t go that far, you can certainly have a fuse-ball table at least.
It can certainly help in to introduce mobile furniture for easy accessibility around the space. This can add to the fun element at your workspace.
2. Developing a Space That Is Rich in Amenities:
73% of the millennials work more than 40+ hours a week. To support long working hours, having a dedicated coffee zone is a must.
Fresh food options in a hygienic cafeteria space along with ergonomics considerations can get you started in the right direction.
3. Have Designated ‘Me’ Zones:
Third-party spaces should be strategically placed throughout the office floor. Ideally these should be zones where your employees can gather over a more informal setting for a peaceful recharge.
Alternatively, these spaces can be used for collaborative meetings or more casual interactions between co-workers.
4. Offer Platforms to Connect & Collaborate:
While your employees may be adept at using Instagram and Snapchat, they still expect a seamless mix of technology with your office space to enhance their performance.
Effective applications and software suites with well-designed enterprise technology can certainly help.
5. Introduce Resimercial Design:
Bring the comfort of your home to your workplace via Resimercial design. Focus more on collaborative spaces rather than individual work stations. Possibly introduce elements of lounge seating for your employees.
6. Job Security Ranks at The Top:
A Manpower Group survey found that 87% of millennials ranked job security as their number one criterion for employment.
With costs of living skyrocketing, they also considered long-term employment within the same company, matching their job skills with the demands of the market and an opportunity for career progression.
7. Use of Nature in The Space:
Bring nature into the centre of the office space to spark innovation.
Maybe have a glass ceiling to bring in lots of natural light. Beautiful bright colours can imbibe a sense of fun and energy. For instance, the oval atrium at Brigade Tech Gardens in Whitefield, brings in a lot of natural light that immediately refreshes the tenants as they walk into the space.
8. Adapting to Different Behaviours & Tasks:
The needs of your employees should be prioritised. Think beyond an office that just offers a typical work setting.
Up the ante by bringing ideal lifestyle experiences inside the building or adapting to space that offers “live, work and play” opportunities in the neighbourhood.
For businesses looking at spaces like these, Signature Towers at Brigade Golden Triangle, offers the perfect balance of work and leisure, set within the bustling commercial corridor of East Bangalore.
Offer an Experience, Not Just a Workplace
When posed with the option of working in an office that gives access to recreational activities like a multiplex, a mall, food outlets and restaurants, there is little opportunity to say no.
The millennial approach to the workplace is different from their predecessors. Therefore, by offering the overall experience, and embracing the millennial work style, businesses can be sure to attract and retain the best talent in the industry.
Fostering Talent Minus Stereotypes
Remember that the very nature of work is undergoing a seismic shift. And millennials are at the centre of this experiment. This is a sign of changing times where it is no longer a concession for young workers to create more flexibility and choice of where and when they work.
For businesses, this is an opportunity not to be missed. It is time to reinvent the way they think of work and create workspaces that are lean, agile and adaptable.