Organizational Behavior and Design

What are the defining behavioural characteristics and work-related preferences of Millennials? How do these factors shape our understanding of the most appropriate leadership styles and approaches to adopt when leading a team of Millennials? 

Behavioral Characteristics of Millennials

From the very beginning, it is crucial to know what is millennial. Millennial can be well understood soon after a brief explanation of it. In other words, Millennials are also called Millennial Generation or Generation Y or Gen Y. These are the demographic group between Generation Z and Generation Y. In fact, there is no accurate date regarding the starting as well as ending of these generations. During the early 1980s, the researchers and demographers utilize the year as the starting birth years (Howe and Strauss, 2000). They use the mid-1990s to early 2000s as the ending birth year for these generations for the Millennial. The behaviors of Millennials vary statistically in different significant ways, and it impacts the society in various forms. The first preferences and behaviors are those who differ according to a kind of degree from the preceding generations at the similar age.  It is likely to become a part of their lifelong traditions. From the research, it has been observed that the common characteristics and behaviors of the Millennials focus upon the impacts of their education, consumer behavior, learning and also communication. Some key traits are being discussed below the Millennial (The Millennials, 2004).

  • It is important for the Millennials to keep their commitments and time flexible for a long term. They keep so that they can take advantage of better options. Millennials frequently change their mind and wants to shift places and time of their services to wherever they feel they can fit into it. They demand more granularities in the services because they do not want any productivity or loss after finishing their tasks.
  • They strongly prefer learning by doing (Howe and Strauss, 2007). That means they never read the directions; they love to learn using interaction. Some of their ideal environments are computer simulations, multiplayer gaming and also social networking.
  • On the other hand, millennial is fascinated by the services and processes that speed and work their communications. They always prefer merit systems to other. When they feel that they are wasting their time, they become furious.
  • It is a fast process for Millennials for the adaptation of Internet service and computers because these traits are inborn. They anticipate all their scholastic services to be included digitally online because they can choose and pick about the methods behind their learning and when they want to learn (Strategist, 2015).
  • Most of the Millennials are gamers, so they spent thousands of hours to play computer and electronic video games. Since Millennials are from today’s generation, so they love colorful graphics, steady interactivity, full motion multimedia and also the ability to learn and progress to higher levels.
  • Millennials are multitaskers, and they can excel at handling several tasks at once. Multitasking makes them efficient, and it also helped them to speed up their knowledge by giving permission to accomplish more than one task at the same time (Pin, 2015). Millennials want to utilize their time more efficiently, and the multitasking proposes them more options. 

Work-related preferences of Millennials

From the research, it has been observed that most of the Millennials imagine leadership positions all over the world (Chou, 2012). The organizations are becoming more and more concerned with the methods to make sure of their success. Millennials have a hard desire for working abroad, and additionally, seventy-one percent anticipate that. They demand of doing an overseas task in the middle of their career, and it is incredible news for some businesses searching for worldwide development. However, the terrible news is that Millennials wants to go to destinations such as the United Kingdom, Australia as well as the United States of America at the highest point of their list of things to get (Singh, Bhandarker and Rai, 2012). According to the research, it has been observed that only eleven percent was eager to work in India and two percent in terrain China. Apart from of this, over half said they would work in underdeveloped countries to advance their career. According to the Millennials, they are open to work with more established period and worth tutors specifically. In any case, there are signals of pressures and so thirty-eight percent saying that more established senior management do not categorize with more youthful laborers. Thirty-four percent of the Millennials says that their drive was scaring to different periods. Moreover, half felt that their supervisors did not comprehend the way they utilize their innovation at work.

Figure 1: A graph is showing that why Millennials want to become leaders.

Millennials are inclined of becoming leaders for various purposes. Based on the average statistics, forty percent of the respondents stated that it is critical for them to become leaders or managers. It is seen in Japan, and the percentage is eight and in India, the percentage is sixty-three. Globally, high earnings in future became the most dominant theme of the world and no doubt the Millennials are responsible for it. The range is quite wide (Debevec et al., 2013). From the Central Europe, half of the respondent chose high earnings in future, and the reason is to follow leadership. Today, every Millennials wants to become a leader and for that money is required, and so everyone runs for high future income. Only the brilliants get passed on this race. Forty-six percent of the African Millennials wants to gain opportunities by mentoring and coaching others. Now, taking about the Asian Millennials, they see their work-life as work-life only. They can balance work-life and personal life. They set enough time aside for their privacy. In Singapore, seventy-six percent of the Millennials has a balance in the work-life, putting aside sufficient time for families and leisure. In India, forty-two percent carries a flexible condition in working. But Vietnam is different; seventy-six percent of the Millennials are engaged in cultural as well as sports events. The Asian Millennials are very confident about their prospects (Hernon and Rossiter, 2007). They work hard and secure a nominal amount of money enough to secure the lives of grandchildren. Their outlook seems to associate with the economic expansion the regions has experienced in their lifetimes. 

Impact of leadership styles and approaches during leading a team of Millennials

Here, an impact of leadership styles and approaches during leading of Millennials are being discussed. But at first, it is important to know that which leadership styles and approaches are suitable for which type of Millennials (Downing, 2006). That means how the behavioral characteristics and work-related preferences of Millennials get affected by leadership styles and approaches. For example, laissez-faire leadership style, transformational leadership style, and situational leadership are best suitable for handling the behaviors of Millennials. The impact of these three leadership styles on the Millennials are being described below:

Laissez-faire leadership style

Laissez-faire leadership styles give freedom during the time of work of the Millennials. Laissez-faire leadership approach provides support with advice and a considerable amount of resources if required. Otherwise, they do not get into it (Perruci, 2011). It is because of this leadership style; the Millennials receives high satisfactions in their job. According to Cambel and Twenge’s arguments, the manager of an organization needs to show Millennials in a straightway that how they are important to the company. Explicit encouragement from the managers could lead the Millennials to perform better, and it would be better for the organization.

Transformational leadership approaches

Millennials love challenges and opportunities and a transformational leader focuses on inspiring the followers to move beyond their potential and thus challenging them intellectually (Wisniewski, 2010). Since, the Millennials wants to become leaders in future, so, transformational leaders are more concerned with the tailoring of leadership style towards their followers. It also provides rewards towards their supporters. Researchers have found that the Millennials who are pleased with their leaders and feel that they are being treated with respect and are necessary for the organization, gets more attached to the organization (Hawkins, 2011).  A transformational leader treats the new ones with respect and provides them a space to feel that they are important for the organization.

Situational leadership style

On the other hand, situational leadership style also keeps importance for the Millennials inside the workplace. Paul Hersey and Kenneth Blanchard originally developed the situational leadership. It is quite clear from the name that situational leadership requires familiarizing to situations that ascend because the situational possibilities dictate the style of Millennials for that moment (Sadler, 2003). Situational leaders adjust their techniques in leadership according to the skills and behavior of the employees and it is very best for handling Millennials as their attitudes and style of working varies. It also shows its effectiveness on the increase of productivity of a god work environment, and they love working in a good atmosphere.

If any leader wants to become a leader who would fit the style of the Millennial then, transformational leadership is suitable for it. For example, Millennials are exceptionally familiar with the latest technologies because they grew up with PC’s, the Internet as well as iPhones. Therefore, the leader needs to transform him or her into a technical person. Most of the Millennials engage themselves in social networking, messengers and Whatsapp, Instagram and so on for their personal issue or work-related issues. Same case, the leader needs to transform him or her from telephonic communication to a social networking communication for discussing any work related issue. They are occasionally alone. In most of the time, they are busy with twitting online, posting as well as texting.  They can cooperate without fear of asking others for help.

One of the most important thing a leader needs to do is to understand the goodness and creativity of the Generation Y. They need to realize that this new generation is far better than the old, and this new generation can perform multitasking. Moreover, the Millennials require an infrastructure for their technological professionals and capacity to work as a team to become an advantage in business (Caldwell, 2015). Generation Y or the Millennials are idealistic in nature and have a vibrant picture of the type of leaders they want. It’s very simple; they want a hero who can lead them with fairness and integrity, and also the leader must have a concern about the situations of each and every employee. The only key success in the future of an organization is to know how to lead a team of Millennials. Every company has an excellent leader who knows how to arrange money, time, resource and space skillfully. The solutions of the leader should be very creative, and it should navigate the millennial staff in a positive direction. A wise investment towards aiding leaders know how to best lead Millennials is a Master’s degree in Business Management or Human Resource. Union is crucial among the Millennials, and it is required when significant, and big projects are passed. Therefore, leaders have to work for the union of Millennials and show them the methods behind the positive outcome of that important project. In this way, the leaders can also gain experiences. Taking an example, during the project implementation, the leader will learn how to think analytically, communicate and make decisions in a way the generation Y will understand (Eastman et al., 2014). Similarly, the leaders will be able to reduce their weakness. Each and every millennial carry the capacity of completing complex jobs. After completion, there would be fewer mistakes or no mistakes at all. Therefore, if a leader focuses on individual performance, then the efforts of every member of the team gets maximized.

The leader is not concerned with the size of the team. Instead, they will expect obligation of raising commitments so the objectives of the organization will be accomplished. The motivation of Millennials might be the new limit in the administration, yet it is one that should be vanquished if a leader plan to stay at the highest point of the authority pyramid. Millennials are dignified to redesign the economy. Their exceptional experiences will modify the methods people buy or sell, driving organizations to inspect how they do business for years to come. The attraction of Millennials for technology is redesigning the retail space. They are rotating to brands that can deal maximum suitability at the lowest price possible. 


Caldwell, J. (2015). Book Review: Engaging Millennials for Ethical Leadership. The Journal of Applied Management and Entrepreneurship, 20(3), pp.119-121.

Chou, S. (2012). Millennials in the Workplace: A Conceptual Analysis of Millennials’ Leadership and Followership Styles. ijhrs, 2(2).

Debevec, K., Schewe, C., Madden, T. and Diamond, W. (2013). Are today’s Millennials splintering into a new generational cohort? Maybe!. Journal of Consumer Behaviour, 12(1), pp.20-31.

Downing, K. (2006). Next generation: What leaders need to know about the millennials. Leadership in Action, 26(3), pp.3-6.

Eastman, J., Iyer, R., Liao-Troth, S., Williams, D. and Griffin, M. (2014). The Role of Involvement on Millennials’ Mobile Technology Behaviors: The Moderating Impact of Status Consumption, Innovation, and Opinion Leadership. The Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice, 22(4), pp.455-470.

Hawkins, P. (2011). Leadership team coaching. London: Kogan Page.

Hernon, P. and Rossiter, N. (2007). Making a difference. Westport, Conn.: Libraries Unlimited.

Howe, N. and Strauss, W. (2000). Millennials rising. New York: Vintage Books.

Howe, N. and Strauss, W. (2007). Millennials go to college. Great Falls, Va.: LifeCourse Associates.

Perruci, G. (2011). Millennials and globalization. Journal of Leadership Studies, 5(3), pp.82-87.

Pin, J. (2015). Millennials Without Borders. IESE Insight, (27), pp.5-5.

Sadler, P. (2003). Leadership. London: Kogan Page Ltd.

Singh, P., Bhandarker, A. and Rai, S. (2012). Millennials and the workplace. New Delhi: SAGE India.

Strategist, T. (2015). Millennials. New Strategist Press, LLC.

The Millennials. (2004). Ithaca, N.Y.: New Strategist Publications.

Wisniewski, M. (2010). Leadership and the Millennials. Journal of Leadership Education, 9(1), pp.53-67. is
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