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What Motivates Millennials?

Pizza Party!

My Reflection on Motivating People.

There's buzz about Millennials...And what about the Z-Generation?

While perusing the Internet, I found a September 2015 article in the New York Times about the emerging Z-Generation. According to this article, the birth years to categorize M's and Z's vary by the generational study experts. The article has an amusing chart comparing the two. Read NYTimes "Move Over Millennials"

In my opinion and over the years I found that TEAMS of all ages will go for a good pizza party (with or without beer) no matter what age group they fall in. It's more about working together for a meaningful purpose, clear communication, and appreciation.

The concept of trying to categorize people in order to manage and deal with them may not be the most effective or practical way of leading others. With our diverse cultures, backgrounds, experiences, and interests, is it possible to fairly and accurately assess, motivate, or influence people by their birth year?

My recommendation would be to keep it simple. It starts with you as a leader (versus a boss). Leadership requires patience, compassion, and awareness of the difference between a Boss and a Leader. See the slide show below from OfficeVibe.

Furthermore, you need to ask the right questions, listen to understand, observe the nonverbal cues, and respect each person. These behaviors help to build trust and motivate others. Of course, there is merit to the generational studies. You could choose to memorize how to motivate others according to traits or demographics of Boomers, X's, M's, and Z's.

Or perhaps you may want to ask your team seven questions every month as suggested by Jacob Shirar, (and say THANK YOU).

  1. What's the one thing you did this month that you are proud of?

  2. If you were the CEO, what's the one thing you would do differently?

  3. How can I be a better leader?

  4. What's your biggest challenge right now?

  5. What can we do to make you more successful?

  6. What's the one thing we should do to improve our product or service?

  7. Are there any projects you'd really like to work on if you were given the opportunity?

To inspire others to be SELF-MOTIVATED, great Leaders build good rapport and trust, ask these questions consistently with sincerity, really listen, and follow through on agreements.


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