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How to Build Healthy Competition Between Millennial Employees?

How to Build Healthy Competition Between Millennial Employees?

Millennials have been portrayed as the laid-back, entitled generation that doesn’t want to work for what they want. With this kind of reputation, many may wonder whether it’s possible to get this generation to compete with each other in the workplace. Turns out, it is! Encourage healthy competition between Millennial employees with these tips:

Consider the end goal.

When Millennials are asked to compete with each other for promotions or special assignments at work, they may not respond well. Millennials value collaboration, so turning against each other to get ahead is not natural to this generation. Instead of making a promotion or new job the end goal, try making it something fun such as a “leave a day early” pass or a front row parking spot. This way, the competition can keep a lighthearted, friendly tone while still motivating employees enough to work hard.

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Group Millennials together.

Instead of having each employee compete against each other, group the department into separate teams. Make sure that you think carefully about the teams. Teams should have members with very different strengths and weaknesses so that each member has a chance to shine. Millennials love to collaborate, so competing against another team, while getting the chance to work with their co-workers is the best way to keep them motivated and engaged in a little healthy competition.

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Talk about the journey.

Even if some of your employees don’t reach the end goal, you should still take the time to speak with them about the journey that they took in their attempt. Pull them aside for a one-on-one conversation to discuss what could have been done differently, what they succeeded at, and where they should improve. If they were in a group, be sure to single out their individual contribution to the assignment. This open and honest conversation will keep that employee motivated and competitive, ready to fight in the next office challenge!

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Encourage self-improvement.

Even when there’s no specific project or competition currently taking place in the office, leaders should still encourage Millennial employees to improve on their own. The mindset of stepping over people on your way to the top is not widely accepted by Millennials. Instead, this generation prefers to challenge themselves and believes in empowering employees to be independent. The best way to do this is to always create a culture that fosters self-improvement. Have employees train with co-workers from other departments to learn more about what they do, encourage their involvement in community organisations, and alert employees of any upcoming networking opportunities that may help them professionally. If you get employees to start thinking that they should always be on the path to improvement, then an atmosphere of healthy competition will soon follow.

Recap as a group.

Challenge Millennials in your office to solve a problem that has been plaguing the business for some time. Once the challenge is over, pick the team or single employee with the best solution. Then, bring everyone together as a group and go over what each team came up with. Lead an open conversation with everyone about the pros and cons of each. Let the group leaders talk about how their team came up with the decision, and why they thought it was the right way to go. Sometimes, competition can be viewed as cutthroat and secretive, but when you hold open discussions like this with everyone involved, it helps Millennials understand how to compete in a healthy, team atmosphere.

Do you lead a group of Millennial employees? How have you managed to create healthy competition in the workplace? Share your strategies in the comments below!

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Joel Goldstein

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Last Updated on October 16, 2018

8 Things to Remember When You Don’t Know What to Do with Your Life

8 Things to Remember When You Don’t Know What to Do with Your Life

Sometimes in life, we find ourselves at a dead end, or a crossroads, or on a path that seems to go nowhere and say “I don’t know what to do with my life…”

No matter what stage you are at in life, if you are unhappy with it, or unsure as to how to proceed, then you need to reevaluate.

When I was in high school, I remember thinking that I had to pick a career at which I would be happy for the next 50 or so years of my life. What a daunting task. How do you know what’s going to make you happy for the rest of your life, especially if you’re only 16 and you’re still getting a thrill out of watching “The Breakfast Club?”

You can’t know. You can’t know what’s going to make you happy even five years from now. But you can know what makes you happy now and if you’re current position — or school track — isn’t it, then you need to move on.

When my oldest children were contemplating their college careers and job prospects, I often told them to just go and take classes or try things they thought might be interesting and if they didn’t like the class or workshop or whatever, then cross that off your list. Life is often about trying things and realizing what you don’t want to be when you “grow up.”

I spent a year substitute teaching in an effort to see if I wanted to become a public school teacher. I enjoyed that year immensely, but after talking with teachers and doing some of their job for a year, I realized that was a career that was not for me.

1. It’s okay you can’t figure out the whole future

Remember, you don’t know what’s coming next. Life is full of interesting twists and turns, but if we continually pursue things that we enjoy doing whether for a job or hobby, it will make the journey interesting and more fun.

Maybe you enjoy making jewelry right now. Maybe you can sell it. In five years, you might be a successful jewelry designer or you might have moved on to another craft. It doesn’t matter. You have the experience of your jewelry design to fall back on and help you with other projects in the future.

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2. Try to be comfortable with discomfort

Sometimes life is uncomfortable. Sometimes we don’t have enough money to do all of the things we want to do. If you have something you really want to pursue, then you must be able to live with some amount of discomfort in order to do that.

For example, I want to mush sled dogs and run the Iditarod. In order to do that, I had to give up my neat, tidy suburban home and move my family to a cabin in Alaska.

We don’t have running water or regular electricity and our cabin is much smaller than our old house, but we don’t mind the discomfort of those things because we live in a beautiful place and I get to pursue my dream.

3. Life is uncertain, go with it

Stuff happens. I thought I had it all. I had a great job and a great house in the woods. Then I got fired, lost my house and turned 40 all in the same week. Then I found out I was pregnant. Quite the week.

I laid on the couch for a couple of days, depressed, but then we got it together, made a plan and moved to Alaska.

Take uncertainty and turn it on its head. Every bad thing is an opportunity to make something good happen.

Besides, it’s really never too late to change your life course when something goes wrong! Don’t believe me? Here’s the proof:

How to Start Over and Reboot Your Life When It Seems Too Late

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4. Overcome distractions and stop procrastinating

You’re not getting younger. Sorry, but it’s true. If you don’t start taking the time to pursue your dreams, you might find yourself at the end of your life with nothing to show for it but a lot of Facebook posts and a bunch of TV shows you just had to watch.

If you are serious about pursuing a dream — whether it’s designing jewelry, professional skateboarding or being a rich and famous computer guru, you better get on it.

Take those first steps. Turn off your Facebook notifications and get working. You won’t get anywhere merely thinking about how great you could be.

Better yet, learn these steps to stop procrastinating and start to focus on what truly matters:

What Is Procrastination (And the Complete Guide to Stop Procrastinating)

5. Ask yourself questions

Take some time for yourself. Ask yourself big questions. And small ones.

Learn about yourself. Meditate. Write down the things that interest you and things you could see yourself doing if time and money were no object. Dream big. Quiet your mind and really imagine yourself doing those things.

By asking yourself meaningful questions, you’re building yourself an invincible Motivation Engine like this and whenever challenges arise, you know how to deal with them.

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6. Volunteer or shadow someone

If there is a job or hobby you are interested in — from grooming dogs to being a zookeeper — volunteer or job shadow and see if it’s an occupation you really want to do.

All the dreaming in the world isn’t going to help you if you don’t go and get your hands dirty. Sometimes, we think we want to do something and then once we try it, we realize it might not be the kind of work we like after all.

Or it might be more involved than we realized. It’s important to get hands-on experience and do a lot of reading by those with first-hand experience before we give up our current life to pursue a dream.

7. Save up

If you need to move or go to school to pursue your new dream, it might be pertinent to get a job doing something — anything — and save up the money to allow you to do it.

I worked for many years to build my writing and editing portfolio and I now I can write and edit articles from my wee little cabin, get paid, and use the money to pay for the equipment and food I need to run my dogsled team.

Would I love to be able to make money just from running dogs? Sure. But it’s not possible right now while I’m building and training my team.

I don’t have a reputation in dog mushing yet, but I do have a reputation in writing. So I do one job I love to pay for the other.

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8. Answer the door

Opportunity may be knocking but if you don’t answer the door, how can you take advantage of it? You must take opportunities when they are presented to you.

Sometimes it’s not the right time, but it doesn’t matter. Opportunities happen when they happen. Answer the door or that opportunity might walk on by and knock on someone else’s door.

Final thoughts

The most important thing to remember when trying to figure out what do with your life is that no action is an action in and of itself. You must make decisions and try things — even if you end up hating them or wanting to do something else.

Remember, it’s never too late to start again. (Jack’s story is an inspiring one about  rebooting life at a later stage of life!)

At the end of your life, you won’t regret trying things and failing, but you will regret not ever trying at all.

Close that laptop and go get your life.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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