Over the past few weeks I have taken some time to explore some of the attributes that may help leaders facing the emergence from millennial generation as they enter the workforce (click to read). Along the trail, I have looked at several of the attributes considered attractive to millennials. Added to the list this week is the need to provide a clear path for career advancement.
A close friend of mine is a highly sought-after consultant to the healthcare industry. He relays a story of working with several millennials at a nationally renowned hospital. These young up-and-coming executives requested the opportunity to quickly advance into managerial and leadership positions. My friend, with years of experience, determined that they were not yet seasoned enough to assume these demanding roles. Even so, he realized that if they were not promoted, they would seek opportunities elsewhere.
My friend’s experience is not unique. Several studies and reports have reinforced the observation that a clear path for career advancement is needed to both attract and sustain millennial team members. Absent this opportunity, they will change jobs, companies, and/or locations to pursue a path of increasing opportunity for professional growth. Some observers have commented that millennials seem like fickle job-hoppers when it may simply be that they did not see a pathway for advancement at their current firm.
Leaders who recognize this factor are wise to set out a very clear career lane for each member of the team. Doing so will help stabilize the team and can lead to increase longevity for those who are hired from the ranks of the millennial generation.
Taking time to recognize and address this need may or may not take some extra time in the leader’s schedule – either way, it will take the Courage to Lead.