These are the three skills younger managers are better at

24 April 2018 -

Young manager skillsMillennial managers are increasingly filling senior decision-making positions. Insights reveal three unique qualities driving young managers to shape the future of industry

Jermaine Haughton

1. Self-improvement

Compared with just 84% of Baby Boomers (those born 1946 – 1964) and 81% of Generation Xers (those born between 1961 – 1979), a study from the Pew Research Center shows that 94% of millennials (individuals born after 1980) commit to personal improvement.

Furthermore, young professionals are more willing to learn new skills and apply their training at work than past generations. Researchers from the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology studied 290 employees of the oil and gas organisation at the end of technical training courses and found younger workers had higher levels of motivation, greater levels of proactivity, and greater conscientiousness than members of the previous generation.

Employee self-improvement enables companies to stay up-to-date with the latest industry trends and challenges, and operate at peak performance. Improving soft skills alone is worth an estimated £88bn to the UK economy, according to the Value of soft skills to the economy study, led by Development Economics and backed by employers such as McDonald’s and Barclays.

2. Professional generosity

A research team led by personality expert Professor Brent Roberts found narcissism has been declining among young people since the 1990s, with generosity growing. Published in the journal Psychological Science, students who attended three American universities during the last three decades were surveyed using the Narcissism Personality Inventory. It looks for signs of vanity, entitlement and leadership by asking people to choose between 40 pairs of self-descriptive items, which vary from narcissistic (e.g. I am the best) to humble (e.g. I need to improve in this area).

3. Flexibility

Flexibility is one of the most important factors young people prioritise when applying to jobs, and one-fifth (22%) of millennials say they are even willing to work more hours for flexible employers, according to Deloitte. Equally, a third (34%) of young workers say they have left a job because the employer did not provide flexibility.

The wide-availability of email, cloud systems and intranet technology during education has led many millennials to prefer setting their own hours and complete tasks in the way that works best for them.

This means today’s young managers can adapt their management style and working options to tailor support to the specific needs of employees. This paves the way for a diverse workforce that respects individuality and gets results.

Image: Shutterstock

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