Why Managers Should Coach Millennials

Why Managers Should Coach Millennials

Talyaa Vardar, MA, FCPC, MCC
Talyaa Vardar, MA, FCPC, MCC
Executive Coach, Psychologist & Art Therapist

Millennials are motivated by perks, gym membership, free coffee, lunch and drinks. However, what they really look for in an employer is much more than only receiving these benefits. So many studies now are showing us that Millennials want to continuously learn and grow in their jobs. Moreover, they are looking for a good coach more than ever. In a recent global survey, 1400 millennials appreciated and looked for more feedback from their managers.

In contrast, their counterparts are okay with less feedback less often. The study shows millennials want feedback 50% more often than other people at work. Millennials claim that their best source of development is their manager. 

Millennials express that they want more help for their personal development rather than managerial directions. According to a study, millennials said they want to progress in their careers and do that; it’s essential to receive coaching support from their manager. To lead effectively in today’s workplace, managers need to put more effort into understanding young people’s mindsets. Millennials show more self-esteem, more anxiety and need more appreciation. Active listening, asking timely and effective questions, and giving them headspace are coaching skills that will help managers coach and understand Millennials better. 

Let’s take a look at what kind of coaching support millennials expect from their managers: 

Millennials want to be inspired. Millennials respond more to causes that help people. A company’s mission with a higher purpose is more inspirational and motivational for millennials than just actions for the organization’s or team’s success. 

Leaders are role models. Just by appreciating an employee’s action, whether privately or in a team meeting and providing a pat on the back, inspires an employee. It’s as simple as that.  

Millennials want to be surrounded by good colleagues. It is fascinating, but young people are often heard saying they want to be surrounded by people they can learn from. They are very flexible and easy to put an impression on; a little boost can go a long way to improving performance. Millennials look up to their managers and better colleagues and enjoy healthy competition. A coaching culture in the workplace can provide such an environment where the best performance is appreciated. 


Millennials crave authenticity.  Young people like to interact with more approachable managers. They look up to managers who share their own stories of victories and failures; such people can be role models for them. Coaching managers lean towards authenticity, and they are not afraid to show their true and honest feelings. Authentic coaches know how to build trust and establish the right tone for relationships that help young people grow and learn.  

Management through coaching is not about telling people or advising them. Instead, it is helping them achieve their best potential and help them get where they want to be. The best managers are the best coaches who can help unlock a person’s potential to maximize their performance. Millennials have unique characteristics, and they make most of the organization’s workforce. They must be coached in the right direction. 

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