3 Things to Know: Employing Millennials

The topic of millennials in the workforce has been a hot one recently. Find out what you need to know in order to have success with your millennial staff.

Selfies, avocado toast and a laid back attitude—there is no shortage of stereotypes that come to mind and images that are conjured up when thinking of millennials. Mind Your Business has featured many articles focusing on this generation, bringing you the real scoop on millennials as workers. Find out what’s important to them, how to attract them and how to keep them engaged.

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    The first thing you need to know: Millennials are going to be a force on the employment scene for some time. Research indicates that by 2025, 75% of the workforce will be millennials. So you should have a good understanding of the characteristics that make up this group of workers and what sets them apart from other generations. And, it’s no secret that millennials are influenced by social media.

    Here are things to consider when using social media to attract them to your company.

    The second thing you need to know: It’s not all about money for millennials. Money talks, but money can’t buy happiness. Millennial employees like to be recognized and rewarded, but that doesn’t always have to mean breaking the bank. Here are five tips on how to reward and recognize without digging too far into your pocketbook.

    The third thing you need to know: There are many out-of-the-box ways to engage millennials. The average amount of time this generation of workers stays in a position is approximately 1.8 years. You can increase their longevity at your company by giving them a lot of face time with leadership and taking action on issues that are important to them. Check out this how-to guide for effectively engaging your millennial workforce and also consider these tips on how to make your company millennial-friendly.


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  • 3 Things to Know: Office Safety

    No matter what business you own, your most important job is keeping your employees and customers safe. Here are some informative articles from Mind Your Business that shed light on this critical topic.

    We can hope and have faith that we would never be confronted with a violent incident in our workplace. But having policies that address workplace safety, understanding the warning signs of a potential threat, and knowing what steps to take following a serious event can actually help prepare you and your team to handle whatever comes your way.

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    Here is a detailed look at three of the things you need to know about workplace safety based on the information provided by our experts over the years.

    The first thing you need to know is policies are crucial. If you have critical business information, you write it down—right? Vacation time, benefits, nondisclosure agreements and other significant policies are all commonly included in a company’s employee handbook. The same thing should apply when establishing policies regarding workplace safety—violence, harassment, bullying and other dangerous behaviors and how those behaviors will be handled internally should all be included in detail. Ideally, writing policies to keep your company safe will go beyond your employee handbook; the most well-prepared workplaces even go as far as having an active shooter plan. Don’t wait until it’s too late.

    The second thing you need to know is the potential warning signs. Warning signs can be different in every scenario and can certainly also be signals of other things going on. But, having a basic understanding of the many different warning signs of a potential threat or violent situation could prove to be priceless when it comes to keeping your company and people safe. Here are three dozen possible warning signs that you should be on the lookout for, as well as a list of possible triggers that have the potential of resulting in a dangerous situation.

    The third thing you need to know is what next steps to take. So you know the warning signs, but what do you do next? Here are four steps to take to address a potential threat in your workplace, as well as expert advice on how to follow up with your team and others involved in a threatening or violent situation. And, once the immediate threat to anyone’s safety is over and the scene has been secured, there are five things to think about in the following 60 minutes. Don’t forget to practice all of these critical steps in routine crisis drills.


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    Next up: 4 Reasons a High School Intern Could be a Fit for Your Business
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  • 4 Reasons a High School Intern Could be a Fit for Your Business

    When you’re evaluating potential candidates for your internship program, don’t discount students who might still be in high school. These younger candidates can bring unique value to your business.

    In the lead up to the Third Annual Cleveland Internship Summit on Feb. 27, Mind Your Business will be running a series of articles previewing some of the sessions that attendees will have the opportunity to sit in on. Today’s preview focuses on the legal aspects of internships. Click here to view the other preview articles for this year’s Internship Summit.

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    When looking to fill internship programs, businesses oftentimes automatically go straight to college students. While these students can certainly prove to be competent internship candidates, these businesses might also want to set their sights a little younger.

    JumpStart’s Zerrine Bailey and Youth Opportunities Unlimited’s Craig Dorn—panelists on the “Why Employers Should Consider High School Students for Their Internship Programs” session at the Third Annual Cleveland Internship Summit Feb. 27—took time recently to highlight some of the reasons high school students can be just as good of a fit for internship programs as college students are.

    Listed below are just four of the reasons why your business should not be so quick to dismiss potential high school internship applicants.

    1. They are tech savvy. These young people have proven to be very tech savvy, especially as it relates to activities such as social media. Having a high school student assist with a social media marketing campaign can prove to be a great value add for businesses.

    2. They are trainable. High school-age students in particular have shown themselves to be moldable and open to constructive criticism. This kind of feedback can help guide their future career choices. And speaking of future career choices …

    3. They are eager to learn. Many times, high school students have not yet settled on a potential career path and because of this, are open to learning as much as they can about many different aspects of the business. A college student on the other hand who takes an accounting internship, likely knows that accounting is what their post-internship profession will be and thus will be more focused on learning about that particular subject.

    4. They bring diversity. Young students bring a fresh perspective to the office. And has been noted before, such workplace diversity holds a lot of positives for businesses.

    Register today for the Third Annual Cleveland Internship Summit, taking place on Feb. 27, to learn more about internship program best practices.

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    Next up: Getting Away: 4 Ways to Recharge Without Neglecting Your Business
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  • Getting Away: 4 Ways to Recharge Without Neglecting Your Business

    We know your business takes up a lot of your time, but you can still manage to break away to recharge your batteries without everything going to pieces at your company.

    I have been working with clients to shape more balance in their lives.  I have been working to do that in my own life as well.  There are a few things that I have learned.

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    1. Planning is key

    Set vacation or rejuvenation goals that make sense for the cycles in your business.  I have a goal for a long weekend quarterly and then two bigger vacations one in the spring and the other at the end of the year, which is a staycation so I can have time for planning and family.

    2. Block out time

    As a business coach and consultant, I have to block out my away time just like its client work and plan that out for the year. Then it’s about keeping my commitment to myself. 

    3. Prepare your clients for your time away

    It’s just like a tradeshow and facilitating a big retreat with clients, I make sure I am attending to my client’s needs before I leave and scheduling their sessions and meetings in advance so they know they have me when I get back. This is great for my spring vacation because I am off the grid. I also leave work and instructions with my assistant to follow up with folk who have questions even if that just means she schedules a call with them when I get back. It’s about setting up systems for service while I am away. It’s a competitive world and most things can wait a few days, even a week.

    4. Go off the grid

    At first it was anxiety creating not to have my laptop, not to be connected to my phone.  It would take me the first 3 days just to detox from being constantly on and available to clients and on social media.  That’s when I realized I needed 7 nights so I would have time to detox, unwind, rest and have fun.  The short vacations, I try to work in the mornings before breakfast if needed and then let it go.

    If you are not taking breaks to recharge your spirit periodically, you will eventually experience burn-out, experience deep and unhealthy stress which causes all kinds of chronic disease.  Ultimately, you will be less effective than when you do take breaks.

    Monika Moss-Gransberry is President of MKM Management Consulting 

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    Next up: 5 Smart Hiring Practices Every Business Should Know
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  • 5 Smart Hiring Practices Every Business Should Know

    As with anything, there can be a right way and a wrong way to go about hiring. If you’re ready to add to your team, take a look at these five smart hiring practices and make sure you’re taking the best approach to finding the best candidate.

    Smart hiring practices can help you to identify and recruit the best people for the job. It may seem easy to gather a bunch of resumes and hire them if you like what you see on paper and when you meet the candidate. However, in taking that approach you may be doing a huge disservice to your business. Hiring and training a new employee costs money and time so it is important that you go about it in the right way. We suggest employing the following five smart hiring practices.

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    Smart Hiring Practice No. 1: Take the time to hire proactively. This means actively recruiting the right candidates as opposed to just filling the position with someone who may have some skills, but in actuality may not be the right choice for your business. Small businesses are often guilty of this. Just filling an open position instead of taking the time to identify, recruit and vet the right candidate is not the best route to a successful hire. Think of where you want your company to be in the future. Consider your growth plans and what kind of talent can help you achieve your goals and objectives. Taking the time to do it right will help you avoid mistakes, layoffs and firings, as well as lessen your risk and save you time, money and frustration in the long run.

    Smart Hiring Practice No. 2: Thoroughly screen candidates. This is a very important step that should never be skipped! Consider all aspects of a candidate’s experience, personality, background and job history. Always have them sign a release that allows you to test for drugs, perform a background check and a credit check. While this may seem like an unnecessary step, especially to a small business, it can give you important information. You can hire an outside firm to run these checks for you. It’s well worth the minor cost. You may also want to consider personality tests that will give you an idea of how the candidate will work with others, clients, etc.

    Smart Hiring Practice No. 3: Be aware of red flags! Never ignore red flags in the hiring process. These warning signals can include:

    • frequent job changes;
    • excuses or vagueness about why they left previous positions;
    • not researching or having any information about your company or what you do;
    • not being able to back up their resume with names, facts, etc.;
    • being late for interviews;
    • not dressing appropriately for a job interview;
    • not taking responsibility for previous failures, etc.;
    • being unprepared for the interview;
    • complaining about previous employers;
    • not being able to provide references; and
    • rudeness or a bad attitude.

    Also, be just as aware of a candidate being too eager or too bubbly. This can fade as time goes on to reveal a different attitude. Remember, you are most likely seeing them at their best during the interview process and this is always subject to change.

    Smart Hiring Practice No. 4: Smart job listing practices. If you are going to post an opening somewhere it’s best to list objectives in addition to the job responsibility. You don’t want to eliminate people who could be good hires because they don’t have the exact experience for the job. Sometimes, the best hires are people who have the skills to meet the objectives, but their experience may be in a different area or industry. Skills are often transferable from industry to industry. Since there is always a learning curve anyway on a new hire, they can learn the nuances of your business if they have the basic skills.

    Smart Hiring Practice No. 5: Don’t throw new hires to the wolves. This means once you find a new hire, it is important to continue to mentor them and to help them fit in to your company. It can take months for a new hire to become completely comfortable. Make sure to offer training when necessary. And always give a new hire a copy of your employee handbook and make them sign a paper stating they received it. Communicate all objectives, your expectations of their timeliness, specific rules and regulations (i.e. use of cell phones on the job) and be clear in explaining their roles and responsibilities.

    While hiring new employees is usually not an employer’s most fun task, it is one of the most important. When done correctly, it can save time, money, hassles and can ultimately be a very rewarding process.

    Timothy A. Dimoff, CPP, is president of SACS Consulting & Investigative Services, Inc., a high-risk HR and security consulting firm located in Akron. He is a renowned speaker, trainer and a celebrated author of several books, including the popular Life Rage. Tim, a former highly decorated police detective and SWAT team member, is a nationally-recognized authority on high-risk workplace and HR issues, security and crime. Contact him at tadimoff@sacsconsulting.com.

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    Next up: 5 Takes on the Value of Internships
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  • 5 Takes on the Value of Internships

    The value of internship programs to the actual interns working within a firm isn’t hard to see. The interns get an opportunity to put their classroom skills to work in a real-life environment while also getting a chance to add valuable contacts to call on during their impending future job search. But what’s in it for employers? Some of the early returns to a Greater Cleveland Partnership survey on the value of intern programs have found hesitancy on the part of some companies to bring interns on, citing such reasons as not understanding the value interns can bring to an organization or not seeing a need to have an internship program in place.

    The value of internship programs to the actual interns working within a firm isn’t hard to see. The interns get an opportunity to put their classroom skills to work in a real-life environment while also getting a chance to add valuable contacts to call on during their impending future job search. But what’s in it for employers? Some of the early returns to a Greater Cleveland Partnership survey on the value of intern programs have found hesitancy on the part of some companies to bring interns on, citing such reasons as not understanding the value interns can bring to an organization or not seeing a need to have an internship program in place.

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    Data around those companies that have such programs in place, however, indicates there is a benefit to employers who commit to internships. Employers made job offers to 64.8% of their interns during 2014 with 79% of interns accepting those offers, according to a study by the National Association of Colleges and Employers. The study found that employees who had completed either an internship or co-op program were more likely to be with their employer at both the one-year and five-year retention benchmarks.

    As part of the Greater Cleveland Partnership’s ongoing internship study, which is being completed in conjunction with Cleveland State University, survey respondents were asked to identify their top reasons for bringing interns aboard. Five responses from Northeast Ohio companies are below.

    Citizens Bank

    We have a Commercial Banking internship program to create a pipeline of diverse talent for future hiring. The college students are also a value-add for time-limited projects.


    FIT Technologies

    • Helps offset high staffing needs during summer season.
    • Offers value at an economical hourly rate.
    • Supports IT training and college programs.

    foundation. a brand and communication strategy firm 

    • Valuable assistance.
    • Opportunity to make a positive impression of Cleveland on young talent in an effort to bring them back to this market.

    Safety Controls Technology

    Many of our interns participate in our intern-to-hire program. Interning with our company allows the student to see what an occupational safety and health company actually does and allows them to ascertain whether or not they’re truly interested in the field. We find that interns who have completed service with us are more engaged and ready to start in a career the day after they graduate.

    Turner Construction Company

    Aid in success of future recruiting efforts. Increase diversity. Provide exposure to our industry for interested candidates.

    Add your voice
    The survey, part of a broad collaboration on internships between Dr. Ronald Berkman of Cleveland State University and GCP, should take no more than 10 minutes and asks about the perspectives of your organization on internship programs, your use of interns, and related questions. The information will help build mutually rewarding connections between the business community and local interns. To access the survey, visit www.gcpartnership.com/internshipsurvey. Also, stay tuned for information on the upcoming Cleveland Internship Summit presented by Cleveland State University and GCP on February 10. 

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