Is company loyalty an oxymoron?
Nobody spends their entire careers with one company anymore. Now, people switch gigs if the
new place has free snacks and beanbag chairs.
About 60% of people change jobs within first three years – and that number hasn’t changed
since the 1980’s. So, don’t blame millennials. You know, those lazy, entitled slackers who
expect instant gratification, a six-figure salary and Fridays off.
There are now more millennials than baby boomers. So, their influence can’t be marginalized.
They were thrust into the business world and told: work hard and you’ll be rewarded…only to be
swept away by mergers, re-orgs and downsizing. So, millennials grew thicker skin and now see
job churn as normal. They’re fearless about packing up and leaving a company.
And why not?
Here’s my take: Is it realistic to expect loyalty anymore – or has that ship sailed?
Maybe the better question is, how can companies cultivate loyalty among millennials?
For starters, embrace the new ground rules…
• Your top priority is to build trust. Leaders set the tone for the office culture.
• Millennials don’t leave bad jobs, they leave bad bosses.
• Inspire your people. They want to believe in your mission, if it’s authentic.
• Be transparent and candid in your dealings. Sorry, there’s no app for that.
• Solicit ideas and empower them. Give millennials a voice, acknowledge their contributions.
• Offer work-life balance. Be flexible, allow them to work from home.
• Offer honest feedback, in a two-way dialogue.
• Recognize their work. Reward them with a paid day off, or tickets to a hot event.
And if all else fails, install a new game room.