How leadership style changed in the millennial world!

Millennials are known to be impatient, experimental lot. They have their priorities clearly defined. They prefer travelling and spending on experiences, rather than on high ticket investments like property. As one can easily guess, their working style and expectations from work vary drastically from the earlier generations. Understandably so, the rise in the millennial workforce has resulted in a series of transformations at the workplaces. And if that was not enough, they have influenced the leadership style. Millennial are the firm believers of the fact that true leadership is about empowering others. They believe and look up to leaders who add value and understand their view point. Emotional intelligence is an important virtue and so is flexibility.

If one has to be successful in leading a millennial team, he/she needs to evolve to connect well with the Millennial. Gone are the days of dictatorial and micro-management style of leaders.

Want to be a popular leader. Here are some top leadership traits in the millennial world

  1. Flexibility and work-life balance: This is the most important for Millennial. They are free spirited and prefer working with leaders who are good with flexible hours, telecommuting and location independence. So, do not make the mistake of stressing for a full house from 9 am to 6 pm every day, if you want to be a leader who is high on the popularity quotient 
  2. Be open to feedback: This is a value that works well with Millennial. They consider this as a sign of a leader who is confident about his achievements and still willing to learn and experiment. They in turn believe that such leaders understand the importance of recognising both your strengths and your weaknesses
  3. Be simple and humble: The days of the typical bossy leader are over and done with. The Millennial, who are a considerable number in the workforce across organisations, value leaders who are simple and humble. The ‘Hero CEO/ Executive’ Archetype has been broken.
  4. Live and let live: Millennial value leaders who take stress in their stride and help them with solutions in difficult scenarios. They do not like leaders who unnecessarily follow up or create pressure. They take this as ‘lack of trust’ in the team. So, if you are pestering, snooty leader who wants to keep a close watch on your team, then forget about being a respectable one.

Considering that Millennial will make up 75 percent of workplace leadership by 2025, it’s critical that the current and future leaders evolve and transform their leadership style, so as to ensure the success of their team and the organisation at large.

The most successful leader of a team of Millennial will be the one who can connect with them and understand their aspirations. The key doesn’t lie in just being hands-on with your work, it is also about having a good time or cracking a joke just to ease of stress and doing a heart-to-heart talk with the team sometimes. It is compassion and understanding and not the degree from the most premium institute that can make you the ‘popular leader’ amongst this generation.

Akanksha Jain
Akanksha heads PR and Communication at BharatPe. She has over 15 years of experience in working across global/digital public relations, corporate and brand communications, crisis communications, brand and market communications domains.

In the past, Akanksha has successfully planned and executed public relations/brands campaigns across India and over 30 other countries. She is a start-up specialist and has extensive experience of working with emerging brands. She has been associated with brands like Pine Labs, MobiKwik, VLCC and Power2SME and spearheaded their PR/brand/communication campaigns.

1 Comment on "How leadership style changed in the millennial world!"

  1. Harleen Sachdeva | August 3, 2019 at 1:00 PM | Reply

    Bang on article. Couldn’t agree more. But this transformation certainly comes with its own set of challenges. It will be worth deliberating how to groom millennial generation to take the baton forward, to be future leaders. The millennial workforce in majority is distracted (Insta, Amazon, Netflix et al), consumed in making travel plans, weekend plans and certainly takes flexi working for granted. It’s amazing to see this generation read so much and yet not be able to write/draft well. It’s difficult to find good talent these days.
    As long as deadlines are met, quality of work is of good standard and responsibility and accountability is taken seriously, attention to detail is not missed, no generation would ever have a problem. The challenge is the laxity, the no big deal attitude and don’t take stress narrative that will also lead us no where. One has to strike the right balance. Businesses/corporates have become more demanding, there is cost cutting and less resources are being deployed. Hence, it becomes all the more important for both the generations to strike the right balance.

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