How You Should Deal With Young Employees
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It is hard to hire new talent, it is harder to get them to work. Young employees are excited souls ready to prove themselves but they are also anxious and a tad bit timid. Though they might possess crazy internet skills and have the ability use their iPhones like Harry Potter uses his wand, there are certain skills they need to inculcate when it comes to working in a professional environment.
Being the appointed person for this task, you have to play Moses and guide them on their path to professionalism. And like Moses you will have to embrace the fact that the journey is going to be a long one, with numerous questions along the way. And mistakes.
Most students join work immediately after college without giving much thought to what they really want to pursue. They feel the need to be independent and make decisions that in the long run may seem unfruitful or even unintelligent. The ones that do know their path and have a creative angle might lack the confidence. The one with confidence might not care about your instructions (or you) and could turn out to be a middle aged man’s nightmare.
These young people might turn out to be a character but some creative geniuses hold the power to change your perspective. They can bring life to the workplace and can only add to your store of ideas. They inspire you to change. It is this side of every fresher one needs to uncover and below are some ideas to start with –
The First Day
The first day at work is confusing and with my experience I can say that a fresher has literally no idea about what’s going on. One thing you have to understand here is that being just out of college these young minds have done nothing else but taken from society –money, food, their parent’s resources. Just filling themselves up with free stuff. Now will the first time they will actually contribute something back and this day will mark the beginning of their professional life. Make an impression and let them know that they will be helped and guided. Before you start with work, get to know them a little bit and acknowledge their presence. Welcome them to the family. Tell them how things go about the place and share a laugh. A bad first day might lead to reluctant employee who just waits for the day to end or a distracted one who might do the exact opposite of what you asked.
Start the process with Tabula Rasa
A fresher is a clean slate who hasn’t yet been exploited by another organization’s way of working. This will be your biggest advantage. Help them figure out what they are best at and how their talent could be utilized. They just might surprise you. With no experience beforehand you will have to direct them to help them grow and help the organization grow with them. Make sure they are given a creative space but keep an eye on their progress. Let them make mistakes but never twice. Fill up their slate with your marks and together you can be the next Will Hunting and Sean Maguire. You will definitely like them apples!
Have creative sessions where you just sit and talk about plans and ideas about the organization. Ask what they feel about what already exists and what could be changed for better. Listen to their ideas. They might not even know but in their mixed up way of explaining thing with slangs you’ve never heard of, they might have a brilliant idea. If they are reluctant to talk at first, let them listen and figure out on their own. Once they are sure they will surely come up with questions, if not suggestions. And as Voltaire said, “Judge a man by his questions rather than by his answers.”
Bollywood film Mohabbatein was very effective in teaching that however much you shout ‘anushasan’ (discipline) at anyone at the top of your lungs, it will never work. But there are ways it could be encouraged. Discipline and respect for one another is vital when working in an organization and it is equally important to let these young minds know that. It’s not only about coming to work on time but work ethics as well. In an attempt to be the cool boss you might just lose your figure as an authority. A relaxing work environment is welcome but focusing on relaxing more than work never produces result. Be a part of the group but let them know that if they mess up they will be expected to answer.
A balance of the above will give you a productive and happy employee which is only beneficial. Help these fresher grow and watch as they bring a whiff of much-needed fresh air for the growth of the company.
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