Executive Development Blog

Developing Millennial Leaders

Posted by UNC Executive Development on Jun 27, 2017 11:32:33 AM

The millennial generation is not just about to enter the workforce. They are already there. In fact, the oldest millennial is already 37 years of age, yet employers and HR and talent management professionals act like the entirety of this generation is still living in their parents’ basements. While it is true that many millennials are recent college graduates still green behind the ears when it comes to their careers, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that they hold about 20 percent of all management jobs, up from just 3 percent in 2005. And as baby boomers retire, the number of millennials needed to assume leadership roles will rise exponentially—but employers struggle to accelerate their leadership development programs to properly prepare millennials to assume leadership positions.

_K3_0145.jpgThere is no shortage of studies that highlight why this ethnically diverse generation are technical natives, continuous learners, and excellent team players and collaborators. There is also no shortage of written work that highlights how millennials may disrupt the workplace. All of this research in the quest to discover how this generation will behave as a whole has led to the notion that all millennials share the same values and will likely behave in the same way in the workplace. This is simply not the case. Just like not all baby boomers will retire at age 65, not all millennials will be good team players. In fact, as millennials age, notable differences among them are emerging. One common thought about millennials is that they are serial job hoppers, yet there is evidence that millennials who have been in the workforce for a couple of years begin to form more conventional attitudes about work than millennials of the same age who are still in college.

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Topics: leadership, millennials, leadership development

Myths vs. Truths on Older Generations of Workers

Posted by UNC Executive Development on Mar 2, 2017 1:14:10 PM

As aging baby boomers reach retirement age over the next two decades, many organizations face a potential mass exodus of their senior leaders. While the economic downturn may have delayed retirement for many baby boomers, these valued employees will retire eventually, taking with them a lifetime of knowledge and skills that are difficult, if not impossible, to replace.

transfer.jpgTransferring the knowledge from older workers to a new generation will be essential for organizations to remain competitive.  Those that understand will reap the rewards.  The following are some myths and facts on the different generations.

Myths about Older Workers

1.Older workers are less productive than younger workers.
2.Older workers cost more to employ.
3.Older workers are not really motivated—they’re just biding their time until retirement.
4.Older workers are preoccupied with the past and have little interest in the future.
5.Older workers have old-fashioned values and are traditional thinkers. They are overly conservative.
6.Older workers are mentally and physically impaired.
7.Older workers are often ill and absent from work.
8.Older workers are resistant to change.
9.Older workers are unable to learn new skills and new ways of doing things.

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Topics: leadership, millennials, leadership development

What Female Millennials Value at Work

Posted by UNC Executive Development on Dec 15, 2015 11:29:42 AM

True or False? By the year 2025, millennials are projected to make up 75% of the country’s workforce.  On top of that, 50% of these employees will be female.

Take a moment to ponder this….


Organizations need to start preparing as this statement is absolutely true. The discussion around the multigenerational workforce is evident in today’s business conversations. In less than ten years, millennials will make up the largest demographic and half of those will be females. How can you make your organization attractive not only to millennials, but female millennials? Talent Management magazine put together a great article around this topic citing research from The International Consortium for Executive Development Research. Their approach was to interview emerging women leaders from various organizations to gain insight into what they value for their organizations, or from organizations which they would like to work. Their research identified 5 key themes:

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Topics: millennials

Maximizing Millennials in the Workplace

Posted by UNC Executive Development on Nov 6, 2014 12:11:00 PM

Check out this summary from a white paper by Jessica Brack:

Maximizing Millennials in the Workplace

They are known as Millennials, Gen Y, Gen Next, Echo Boomers, the Baby-on-Board Generation, Screenagers, Facebookers and the MySpace Generation, to name just a few. They are the nearly 80 million young adults born between 1976 and 2001 who have already joined or are preparing to join the workforce. By 2014, 36 percent of the U.S. workforce will be comprised of this generation and by 2020, nearly half (46 percent) of all U.S. workers will be Millennials. The sheer number of Millennials combined with the increasing retirement of Baby Boomers means that employers will be facing leadership gaps and they will be looking to Millennials to fill those gaps.

By all accounts, Millennials are unlike preceding generations. They are tech-savvy continuous learners, team players, collaborators, diverse, optimistic, achievement-oriented, socially conscious and highly educated. Employers wanting to groom this group to be their organization’s next generation of top-level leaders must keep these attributes in mind when designing leadership development programs.


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Topics: Gen Y, talent development, millennials

Talent Management: Managing the Multigenerational Workplace

Posted by Nancy Tannenbaum on May 8, 2014 4:00:00 PM

Check out the summary of our newest white paper by Kip Kelly and Dan Bursch:

Today’s workforce is decidedly multigenerational. It is comprised of five generations - Traditionalists, Baby Boomers, Generation X, Generation Y (or Millennials), and a smattering of Generation Z - whose life experiences have left indelible marks on their values and work preferences. This rapid and unprecedented demographic shift has many talent management and business leaders wondering how organizations will adapt to the “5G” workplace.

UNC leadership multigenerational graphic

The focus of many organizations’ recruitment and retention initiatives have included race and ethnicity, gender, veteran recruitment and development, people with disabilities, and more. There is an increasing demand in the workforce today to add multigenerational diversity to the mix. Business executives and talent development managers must include the effects multiple generations have in the workplace to their diversity and inclusion initiatives. Multigenerational workplaces create unique challenges and opportunities for employers who want to leverage each generation’s talents and strengths to benefit their organizations’ bottom lines.  

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Topics: employee engagement, executive development, talent management, millennials, multigenerational workforces