Steve Giglio, Executive Development and Sales Training Professional, Addresses the Challenge of Millenials: How to Train Them to Keep Them

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Millenials: the workforce born between 1977 and 1997 that will soon make up half the workers in the world. And with this diverse group, many of whom were raised in the “me” generation of the 1980’s, comes new challenges for companies looking to train executives and keep their talented sales teams motivated. Steve Giglio is an internationally sought after executive development and sales training professional whose client list includes American Express, Vanity Fair, Allure, Arsenal Capital Partners and TimeOUT New York. Giglio has noticed a shift in how managers need to work with this new workforce. He provides tips for training Millenials that will work whether you are invovled in executive development or training a sales team.

Millenials: the workforce born between 1977 and 1997 that will soon make up half the workers in the world. And with this diverse group, many of whom were raised in the “me” generation of the 1980’s, comes new challenges for companies looking to train executives and keep their talented sales teams motivated.

Steve Giglio is an internationally sought after executive development and sales training professional whose client list includes American Express, Vanity Fair, Allure, Arsenal Capital Partners and TimeOUT New York. Giglio has noticed a shift in how managers need to work with this new workforce. “If asked publicly, many of this generation will say that they want their independence so their creativity can flourish,” said Giglio. “But privately, when I work with them, they say what they most desire is strong leadership and training so that they can accelerate their career development.”

A series of articles in the May issue of the Harvard Business Review confirms that trend in executive development and training. Authors of the article “Mentoring Millenials” state that this generation “did want a constant stream of feedback and were in a hurry for success” but that their “expectations were not as outsized as many assume.” Giglio stresses in his executive development training programs that today’s young professionals will appreciate time taken to train them and bolster their career, leading to more loyalty and less “job hopping.”

Giglio, who has trained thousands of executives and sales professionals, offers the following tips for managers looking to harness the strengths, and minimize the weaknesses, of Millennials and creating reliable, experienced teams:

1) Observe without bias
This says easy, does hard. We all have pre-dispositions with regard to right and wrong and how a person ought to mature in business. The key is to engage in a training process where you observe and understand their background, personal goals and challenges before you shape their behavior. Leave YOUR ego at the door: listen and observe.

2) Learn their ways
Understanding the “why” of their behavior is as important as the “how” to develop it. It is through genuine listening and probing that you a) discover their frame of reference/value system and b) illustrate your concern/empathy via the time you are devoting to understanding them before you direct them. This commitment of time is essential to earn the right to coach them and pinpoint their developmental areas.

3) Know their purpose
As the Harvard Business Review article authors point out about Millennials, “a sense of purpose is a key factor in their job satisfaction.” Therefore you, as their leader, have the responsibility to know their unique sense of purpose and support the attainment of it. And learning this takes times which, if you commit the time to it, your executives and sales teams will appreciate and reward you with motivated performance.

4) Leave mother out of it
As you coach Millennials, remain vigilant and do not sugarcoat the truth about sub-par performance. In other words, don’t mother them. It is essential to witness their inappropriate behavior, play it back to them with specific examples and then genuinely discuss/brainstorm ways to strengthen behaviors that counter these tendencies. This must be done collaboratively. Establish a developmental coalition so that each person understands you know their sense of purpose and are committed to having them achieve it as you shape their behavior.

5) Don’t leave it to chance. Plan!
To operationalize this methodology you need to create a development plan. The challenge here is to present it to them in an unbiased fashion so they feel they can shape the plan with you. Cognitively, they get on board with the plan because they have a hand in creating their plan, yet you have established the plan’s foundation that in turn can be shaped by them and you, relationally.    

6) Stay the course
Stay connected to the plan. Veering off of it can damage the coaching relationship you are forging. Create a series of agreed upon check in times. Make it clear that the expectation is that at each check in time there will be forward movement in one’s behavior from the agreed upon plan. These check-in times are an opportunity to measure and acknowledge your employees’ commitments and to what degree they have achieved the desired behavior.

7) Stretch
Once you have seen demonstrable improvement in their comportment its time to stretch their behavior and pinpoint their next developmental area. Throughout this process you are further and further establishing consistencies in behavior and with this consistency your stretch-recommendations will be welcomed versus questioned.

About Steve Giglio
Steve Giglio is regarded as the gold standard in executive development and sales training. Since 1989, Steve Giglio has been leading executive development and sales-training programs around the world, influencing the development of more than 30,000 executives and sales professionals. He has earned an international reputation as an effective leader who tailors development and training programs to meet the needs of his clients and adapt to the ever-changing business landscape. His client list covers the gamut from publishing and broadcast companies to financial institutions and resort brands.His twenty-year career has earned him a loyal, international client base that includes American Express, Vanity Fair, Citibank, Allure, LexisNexis, Arsenal Capital Partners and more. Distilled from years of experience, Steve’s book, Beating the Deal Killers: Overcoming Murphy’s Law, is an entertaining and informative handbook for people presenting themselves in the public eye. Steve Giglio’s office is located in Manhattan at 250 W. 57 Street, Suite 713, NY, NY, 10107. He can be contacted via phone at (212) 586-2400 or e-mail at info(at)giglioco(dot)com. His web site is at http://www.giglioco.com.

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Steve Giglio
Giglio Co.
(212) 586-2400
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Paul Rakov
The Vokar Group
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