Fantastic book, couldn't be more accurate and so glad I read this. I manage a team of 10 millennial's, all of who are wonderful, hard working individuals. All wanting to make their mark in this world. If you are managing the two set groups of millennial's (important to know the two sets) then def read this. Helps you to understand how they think, how to relate and change your view point.
As a middle aged business owner, I had been wondering if my "crabbiness" about the younger generation of workers was validated or a mere reflection of my own aging process and the genuine negativity it can create towards those younger than myself. After reading Chris's book, it turns out the problem was me. When I reflect upon my own career, I distinctly recall the feeling of not being respected until I proved something. This negative reinforcement style of management was successful in motivating me however as I lurked around with a gigantic chip on my shoulder. But those were negative years indeed as I clawed and scratched for everything. I often wondered if I could have been more productive with more positive encouragement. When I finally became a manager, I genuinely expected the rookies I managed to adopt the same "claw your eyeballs out" approach I did. They didn't. I eventually grew to feel justified in my criticism of "all millennials". "They didnt know hard work like I did", I thought to myself.
However, after reading this eye-opening book, several revelations were explained including a key discovery on page 45. "Millennials must feel their opinions are valued BEFORE they will give us their best". It's not my job to speculate on what socio-political changes occurred, psycho-analyze parenting methods or propose government conspiracies: it's my job to manage Millennials. Armed with this key "aha moment", I am now able to understand Millennials better and become a more effective manager. I am actually stoked to be a better inspiration to them through better empathy and communication and I finally feel like I have the tools to do this now. Makes perfect sense. Thank you Chris.
What struck me most about the book was the practical advice given at the end of each chapter. Chris begins each chapter with a description of what challenge he wants the leader to understand, goes through real world examples from leaders who are effectively managing through the challenge and provides leaders reading a guide to next steps to effectively manage today's workforce. While it's not a particularly long read it is one that you will leave next to you as you manage your team. I have read it twice, dogeared so many pages I can't count and highlighted many strategies that I am using each day. This book will remain on my desk and I have ordered copies for the entire team to read, even if they don't have direct reports. Also, remember being a Millennial isn't a age but a attitude and mindset.
When I first saw the title of Chris Tuff's recent book, I was suspect.
Is this a real thing...a Millennial Whisperer? What does Chris know about millennials that millennials don't know about themselves? My interest was piqued as I thumbed through the book and scanned a few paragraphs which is any millennials sniff test on whether a book is worth reading.
I flipped to page 32.
The paragraphs's title: "Autonomy Within Structure." Hey, that sounds common sense and practical so I read on.
"'Build them a hall way, not railroad tracks' was the next sentence followed by: 'Millennials exhibit a high level of responsibility when they are given the freedom to creatively discover solutions for issues the company may be facing. They thrive under "loose structure.'"
All the good stuff was likely in the first part of the book so I thumbed to page 142.
The title of the paragraph is "Answering 'Let's' with 'By When.'" This is millennial whispering blocking and tacking at its best. The concept Chris explains revolves around putting a firm date on anytime someone say "Let's." It's a brilliant tactic because who isn't excited about "doing stuff" in the future. I know experience-craved millennials are including myself. Weekly I'll find myself saying 'Let's catch up' or 'Let's get lunch' or 'Let's get coffee.' All of these need 'by when' next to them. This paragraph alone immediately helped me self-reflect on those phrases and also helps me positively apply pressure to folks who suggest "we" do something in the future.
I was sold on taking a few hours to read the book and am glad I did. Chris' intuition on leading and managing millennials is spot on. Any manager, millennial or not, who is leading a team of millennials should read this book. Practical advice on ways to build relationships with your team and motivate them to perform better is sprinkled throughout and summarized neatly at the end of each chapter.
Content I would like to see more of in the book would be stories and scripts around how to handle specific conversations for motivation, relationship building, and of course the tougher ones for poor performance. He scratches the surface on these topics but I get a feeling that Chris' experience and true love for leading millennials that there is a wealth of more practical knowledge and stories to share.