How to Get the Most Out of Your Millennial Retail Associates
For years, Publix Super Markets landed on the inaugural list of best places to work in the United States. But like many companies, the supermarket chain has recently struggled to come up with winning strategies to keep the Millennial portion of its workforce engaged and employed.
With Millenials projected to reach 50% of the global workforce by 2020, the generation born in the 1980s and ’90s will dominate the workplace in the coming decades. And unlike the generation that came before it, Millennials have a reputation for switching jobs on a whim. Companies’ ability to attract, develop, and retain young leaders will have a significant impact on their long-term survivability and success.
Five times more likely to work in retail or sales than previous generations, Millennial retail associates are motivated by culture, innovation, and purpose-driven work. With many retail organizations morphing from brick-and-mortar business models to online, companies are looking to recruit customer-facing associates that are eager to embrace new technologies and be fully engaged in their work.
Here are four best practices for retailers looking to retain and nurture Millennial associates.
Create a culture of inclusion. Collaboration is the key to success in the retail industry. If you have a senior base of associates who know each other well, younger associates can feel unwelcome. That isolation can result in short-term employment. Millennials are a we generation, so companies need to focus on creating an inclusive, supportive work environment.
Leverage mobile. Your Gen Y retail associates are smartphone-obsessed, with no signs of becoming less so. But retailers can take advantage of their desire to stay connected. Providing associates with an integrated mobility platform can enhance your business, driving innovation, productivity, and efficiency. Allowing Millennials to leverage technologies that offer self-service scheduling, task management, and even shift swapping will keep them engaged and productive.
Listen up. Every retention strategy should include a way for associates to provide feedback and offer their opinion. But for this process to be effective, leadership must respond in a timely fashion. When Millennials feel their managers don’t listen to them, it can quickly grow into the type of frustration that disrupts the work environment. Maintaining an open line of communication is a key aspect of building trust and fostering positive relationships with retail associates.
Encourage customer interaction. Millennials enjoy interacting with customers on an individual level. Encouraging associates to engage on a variety of platforms will provide your retail organization with valuable insights to help drive the customer experience.
Understanding the Millennial mindset is paramount to growth and success in the retail space. With these strategies, retailers will be poised to engage, maintain, and retain associates in this influential age group. .
Five times more likely to work in retail or sales than previous generations, Millennial retail associates are motivated by culture, innovation, and purpose-driven work.