Millennials as Bosses: Forget Face-to-Face, Online Messaging New Norm for Communicating with Direct Reports, According to Korn Ferry Survey
- Gen X and Baby Boomer Bosses Believe They Work Harder than Millennial Bosses –
- Clear Path for Advancement Critical for Millennial Managers –
The survey found that when interviewing for management positions, millennials say that making an impact on organizational culture is most important to them, with salary being the least important.
“The way bosses communicate with their staff has a huge impact on
organizational culture,” said
When asked what they wish millennial bosses would do more of, the largest percentage (29 percent) said face-to-face communications, followed by keeping their bosses informed at 27 percent.
When asked what they actually do best, only 10 percent said keeping their bosses informed and 3 percent said managing up to executives. The top response for what millennial bosses do best is creating flexibility in the workplace (65 percent).
However, millennial managerial approaches may not be seen as positive by bosses of different generations. Seventy percent of respondents say Gen X and Baby Boomer bosses believe they work harder than their millennial counterparts.
The survey did find though that managers believe millennial bosses are qualified. Seventy-five percent of respondents say they believe millennial managers have earned their role.
“Members of the millennial generation are really coming into their own in the workplace,” said Wallace. “They may not approach management the same way as bosses from different generations, but instead of fighting change, adapting to the dynamic culture millennials bring will help companies succeed.”
The survey also found that compared with Gen Xers and Baby Boomers, knowing what is coming next is critical for millennial bosses. Nearly three quarters (74 percent) said a clear advancement path (e.g. next two positions) is more important for millennial bosses, with 49 percent saying it is much more important.
“Millennials tend to value clear communication and feedback, and organizational leaders seeking the best and brightest from this generation must work closely with millennial managers to provide well laid out career paths,” said Wallace.
About the Survey
To what extent would you agree with the following: Older (Gen X, Baby Boomer) bosses think they work harder than millennial bosses?
|Agree to a great extent||33 percent|
|Agree to some extent||37 percent|
|Neither agree nor disagree||27 percent|
|Disagree to some extent||2 percent|
|Disagree to a great extent||1 percent|
In your experience what is the most common way for millennial managers to interact with their direct reports?
|Online messaging||55 percent|
|In person||14 percent|
When interviewing millennials for management positions, what do they say is most important?
|Ability to make an impact on organizational culture||25 percent|
|Getting ongoing feedback from executives||3 percent|
|Career progression||17 percent|
|A good work-life balance||25 percent|
|Ability to work flexibly||17 percent|
Compared to older generations, how well do millennial managers do in "managing up" to executives (keeping them informed, following through on executive initiatives)?
|Millennial managers “manage up” much better||17 percent|
|Millennial managers “manage up” somewhat better||22 percent|
|Millennial managers are the same at “managing up”||20 percent|
|Millennial managers are the somewhat worse at “managing up”||30 percent|
|Millennial managers are much worse at “managing up”||11 percent|
When recruiting millennials for managerial positions how important to them is seeing a clear advancement path (e.g. next two positions) than older managers?
|Much more important||49 percent|
|Somewhat more important||25 percent|
|About the same||9 percent|
|Somewhat less important||14 percent|
|Much less important||3 percent|
What do you think your millennial managers are doing best?
|Encouraging flexibility in the workplace||65 percent|
|Living up to the company culture||10 percent|
|Keeping their bosses informed||10 percent|
|Managing up to executives||3 percent|
|Face-to-face communications||12 percent|
What would you like to see your millennial managers do more of (pick top choice)
|Encouraging flexibility in the workplace||15 percent|
|Living up to the company culture||19 percent|
|Keeping their bosses fully informed||27 percent|
|“Managing up” to executives||10 percent|
|Face-to-face communications||29 percent|
How common is it in your organization that a millennial supervises people from older generations?
|Very common||17 percent|
|Somewhat common||42 percent|
|Somewhat uncommon||30 percent|
|Very uncommon||11 percent|
On average, do you think millennial managers you’ve worked with have earned their leadership role?
|Yes to a great extent||19 percent|
|Yes to some extent||56 percent|
|No to some extent||19 percent|
|No to a great extent||6 percent|
Tracy Kurschner, 612.309.3957