I thought I’d follow up on Diane’s previous post about the thrills and chills of hiring job candidates with a different twist on the same problem. As someone who is (thankfully) not in a management position, I haven’t had too much experience screening candidates, but watching from the sidelines has left a number of impressions on me–all of which, it turns out, are related to generational conflicts. (Disclaimer: These comments are not based on the current job search going on at the PR News sister publication! They are merely observations…)
Now, at the risk of sounding as self-righteous and entitled as the next “Millennial,” recruiting and retaining top talent isn’t child’s play anymore. Younger, smarter and more qualified candidates are entering the workforce in droves, yet many managers are still approaching hiring the same way they would have a decade ago–that is, they assume that you should want them, no negotiations necessary.
Here’s the problem: In spite of the trouble economy and doomsday-esque talk of a recession, 20-something candidates are not afraid to enter the wild west of unemployment if the alternative is staying at a job that makes them feel unhappy or, worse, unfulfilled. Many managers find this disconcerting, leaving them with little bargaining power when a young employee issues an ultimatum (something Millennials are so fond of doing): Give me this, or I’m gone.”
So, what’s the solution? In short, there really isn’t one. Organizations are trying to evolve their strategies by introducing creative benefits and flexible working schedules, but at the end of the day it’s a cultural difference that keeps this battle in a stalemate. What can managers do to attract and retain the best in the business, from my Millennial point of view? Give us everything we ask for, like, right away.
By Courtney Barnes