In this blog series, we focus on insights from millennials and how you can focus on attracting millennials to manufacturing.

We have discussed perks that Millennials look for in a company and how millennials thrive in an intimate work environment . It is important to Millennials that they feel like a person, not just a number and they love frequent feedback. Millennials value a challenging and trusting work environment; they also desire a clear career roadmap. Millennials also desire to feel a part of the ‘bigger picture’ and look for employment at companies they feel will give them a sense of purpose. Foster a culture of charitable caring, a connected team environment, and some fun social outings and you are well on your way to attracting Millennials to manufacturing.  Assist Millennials in achieving a work-life balance and have inspiring senior management and you are well on your way to attracting millennials to manufacturing!

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Joe’s Lack of Direction

In manufacturing, so many times a young person gets tossed into the ring and just has to figure it out.  Joe was one of them.  There is a lot that can be learned from those experiences but they can be done differently and with the same result.

Why Mentoring Programs Work for Millennial Employees

In mentoring programs, there can be the standard boss-employee structure to the theoretical flat structure.  Boss-employee is so old school, no young person is interested in that.  A flat structure is a nice idea, but it’s not ideal.  Millennial’s desire in the workplace is to be part of a team with visionary leadership that motivates them to action. For there to be an effective employee there needs to be an environment where there is a working relationship between the new employee and the mentor/coach.  The mentor’s role is to not only give guidance, vision, and support but provide feedback and when needed constructive criticism.  As an organization’s mentorship/coaching program experiences growth their emerging leaders’ knowledge and detailed standards can be implemented across the workplace.

How You Can Implement a Mentoring Program that Sees Results

  1. Be Flexible

Some mentors and employees may not be a good fit when paired together. An organization must be flexible enough to mix and match as needed when a pairing is not working out.  Personalities won’t always match up well leading to a poor experience for the new hire.

  1. Reverse Mentoring

A Millennial not only seeks advice and direction; they have the knowledge they want to share as well! They can teach veteran employees about new emerging technological trends and how social media can be applied to their business.  A mutually beneficial mentoring relationship can go a long way towards making your mentoring program a success.

  1. Think Retention

Properly mentor a millennial and you have a better chance or retaining them. They might emerge as a leader when someone retires or moves on to a different position. As this Inc. article states, “…the more you invest (fiscally and emotionally) in your young workers, the more likely it is they’ll become engaged to your organization’s mission”.


We don’t need to baby millennial hires but also not doom them from the get-go.  Have a plan laid out for them so they feel a part of something.  It is our belief that most companies desire this but are easily disappointed when turnover occurs and they see their initial effort go by the wayside when someone decides to move on.