How To Communicate With Millennials

Leading millenials

One of the biggest complaints I’ve heard about millennials is the way millennials communicate. Scratch that… It’s the lack of communication from millennials.

Or so people say.

Man in a white suit sitting in a nice restaurant

Photo by Austin Distel

Many people believe millennials are poor communicators. They lack the social and emotional skills to interact with other people.

This is far from the truth. Millennials are great communicators. If you know how to communicate with them.

How To Communicate With Millennials

Millennials are an evergrowing part of the workforce. According to one study, millennials will make up 50% of the workforce by 2020. That’s a large number.

It’s a scary number to many. This is because they don’t know how to communicate with millennials. They see millennials as scary, aloof, and uncaring.

The key to communicating with millennials is to modify the way you communicate. Yes, this will put a burden on you. However, you are the leader. You are responsible for communicating the vision to your team in a way they will respond, not how you would want to be communicated to.

So, what does it take to effectively communicate with millennials? You will have to:

Choose the right tool to communicate with:

There is a wide variety of communication tools to use these days. From video conferencing to text messaging to social media, you have a wide range of tools to use.

The key is to choose the right communication tool for millennials.

Find the right communication tool for the millennials you’re leading and you’ll be communicating more effectively than you thought possible.

Uplift, don’t tear down:

I remember the stereotypical sports coach. He’s yelling vulgarities, telling you that you need to do better, and that his kid sister has better ups than you do.

This is an aggressive form of leadership. One where the team members are made to feel less than.

Millennials don’t respond well to being torn down and apart. They respond better to uplifting coaching.

Use positive, affirming words to get your point across.

Incorporate humor:

Millennials aren’t the button-up, stiff collar men of the past. Millennials know there is a time to be serious. They also know you don’t need to be serious all of the time.

You can untuck the shirt, kick your feet up, and have a fun conversation with your team. It can be humorous. It can be engaging. And it can be enjoyable.

Learn to use humor and fun in your communication with millennials.

Reduce the size of your communications:

Millennials live in a busy world. Many have become overloaded with commitments and their time is precious.

They want you to respect their time. You can do this by making your communications bite-size.

They’ve grown up in a world of Twitter with its 140 (now 280) character limit. They want small, easy-to-digest pieces of communication.

Think about what you’re trying to communicate. Then pare it down to its bare minimum.

If it gets the point across, that’s all that needs to be there.

Question: What other ways have you found effective to communicate with millennials? Share your tips in the comments below.

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