Failing to retain Millennials?

Failing to retain Millennials?

There is a belief that millennial’s are ‘unreliable’ and job hop every year or so. This is not a fair generalization of millennial’s. Isn’t it more about a failure of organisations to retain them.

Organisations are going to have to face up to this, there is no other option.

Gone are the days of employees staying for years and years or even decades in an organisation. So how are you going to retain or atleast engage your millennial’s?

Let’s look at what your organisation needs to offer.

What do Millennial’s look for?

A cause:

Millennial workers look for a company with a purpose not just a paycheck. Whether you are a manufacturer, distributor or fintech, understand and clearly communicate your cause to your employees and show them how they are directly supporting and advancing this cause. 

Having a cause that matches your millennial’s values is a key starting point to retaining and engaging your employees.


Culture is a set of beliefs, leadership attitudes and even standard procedures (or lack of them) and continues to be an important aspect that brings all generations, not just millennial’s, to an organisation. A start-up has a fair easier task of building a suitable culture while a large organisation has to put in exceptional effort to turn the ship. 

Don’t despair, it can be done.

There are many parts of culture you can influence and build, here are some.

  • Work-life balance is a key area that can develop a strong culture as all workers value this.

  • Technology – how modern is your technology, is your culture one of being always on the front end of technology or a lagard. 

  • Personal development – A millennial after finding the ‘cause’ they can support want to be able to be the best version of themselves. A culture that supports and more importantly,  actively encourages this growth will be a winner with millennial’s.

  • Recognize opportunities from setbacks and not directing blame. Getting learnings from setbacks will ensure your millennials still feel empowered to take calculated risks and be innovative. If blame is thrown around then watch the spark of ingenuity be blown out. 

  • Working from home, make it the permanent option. Millennials were already driving a new WFH reality before 2020 drove us all into lock-down. Embrace this approach with technology supporting employees continuing to be connected.

  • Hire right – when looking for new staff keep in mind how they will fit into your culture. Employees respond to the feeling of having a family they work one, these they trust and would often go above and beyond for.

Whatever culture you put in place or develop, ensure that the supervisors buy in. Without them driving and sustaining your culture any efforts are not going to be effective. A perfect example of this is work life balance where supervisors do not believe in it being a key part of your culture.


Information on pay is easily available to individuals today. A simple internet search will enable an employee to gauge what they are worth. If you are not valuing their contribution through appropriate pay they will leave. If you think compensation is not a driver for Millennials, think again. A lot of millennials are carrying student debt, living in an expensive city and trying to get on the property market. Paying them right is a vital step. 

Check your salary brackets asap.


Millennials are the future of the workforce, the C-Suite and our leaders. Engage, invest and trust your millennials. They are the up & coming leaders and they are the ones who will grow your business.


We now have more information on what your organisation needs to offer but you can still lose your best people because of how they are led. What can we do to mitigate this? 

Read : Leading Millennials for further insight.


*Disclaimer – I am a millennial (just)