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How To Become A Valued Employee Within The Millennial Age

Valued Employee At Work

You don’t have to go far to see that Gen Y have had it tough. It’s stated that millennials have come into business at the worse time period in years. Recession, unattainable house prices and insecure jobs. It’s not been easy for us. Some millennials have instead chose a freelance route, others have become nomadic travellers; furthermore there’s the few who have managed to create the next big startup

Others stick to a more traditional route and become an employee of a business small, medium or large. Every business is wanting some form of value add from their employees. It’s why you are essentially hired in the first place right? Due to the unemployment levels millennial jobs within the workplace are constantly under scrutiny. Companies are keen to harness the abilities of millennials but at the same time the business landscape is tough and you have to be a valued employee to earn the progression path you desire.

Having said all this I feel there are genuine opportunities within business for millennials to make a splash. Although it’s a tough old world opportunities usually occur when someone is a talent. Rarely do you see those lacking talent progressing in business.

Becoming a valued employee is a relatively straight forward process if you’re in the right job role and the correct industry. It becomes blurred when an individual is in a role which they aren’t passionate about.

Here’s a few ways I try and become a valued employee in each organisation I work in.

Get Moving:

Starting your day with exercise will mean you are ready and pumped when you get into the office. As the rest sit around drinking coffee, shooting the breeze you will be engaged and ready to tackle those tasks from the day before.

I regularly start my day with an hours worth of exercise. It’s also a great psychological boost as you know that you can commit 100% to your day ahead as your exercise has already been completed.

The feeling of well being after a great workout cannot be matched and it’s a superb way of starting your day (and on a Monday your week!).

Show Adaptability:

Business changes and you have to change with it. Redundancies are more often than not a result of a changing landscape which effectively alters the bottom line. If the way the business is operating isn’t making money then it needs to change.

I’m always a little bemused when colleagues fail to learn something new or adapt to a new way of working. I am continuously learning new things online, analysing the way I work and taking on as much knowledge as possible. If a new way of doing a specific task appears then I will adapt to this change.

Adaptability is a huge thing for millennials. Our strength as a generation is our technological knowledge and understanding of online. We need to keep abreast of these advancements and leading the change within organisations.

Businesses like individuals who can successfully change path within the minimum of fuss especially in the digital sphere.

Fantastic Self Discipline:

One of the key characteristics or traits of millennials is that we are a entrepreneurial tech savvy generation. One of the key aspects of a successful entrepreneur is self discipline.

Companies like those who are disciplined in their approach to work and their output, especially if you are granted a project to show your entrepreneurial flair. Furthermore those who are looking for flexible working/telecommuting opportunities will near an incredible level of self discipline. Working from home can be the worst enemy of those who lack this level of self discipline.

Self Motivated:

Self motivation is a step further from self discipline and adaptability. It’s that extra yard to make a difference. I know so many people who are hard workers and good at their job but it stops when the clock strikes 5. They go home and that’s the end of their working day. Others are self motivated and will research, read and educate further. This doesn’t have to be extra work but more building yourself as an asset.

One of the most important things about business is educating yourself. Jobs can change, situations can arise but if one is knowledgeable and talented at what they do opportunities will always come.

Self motivation is doing something because you are passionate about it and willing to learn. If you don’t have this then you’re more than likely in the wrong job. Businesses love self learners and those who are motivated. It’s an asset to any business.

Multi Skilled:

Similar to adaptability having more than one skillset is essential in becoming a valued employee. Eggs in one basket springs to mind in this regard.

There are those who are great at one thing and continue to be great at it. Now this is all well and good in a stable market however in an industry where this one thing could change it’s worrying for both the business and the employee.
I’m not saying you have to be a jack of all traders master of none but having multiple skills and qualities is an asset which businesses look for.

Dedicated to the business:

I have wrote a lot about whether you are loyal to your job or your employer and I think most businesses miss that this is actually a two way dedication. The business cannot expect loyalty if the management, job role and other factors are not right.

Having said that dedication to a business where everyone is pulling in the same direction is a trait which will make you a real valued employee. Decisions are made on loyalty and showing your loyalty does indeed go far in the business world.

Reliable (few sick days):

Having spent the last 7 years in employment I have had two sick days in that time and haven’t had one for 5 years. Reliability is something I am built upon and is one of the key traits of a valued employee. As a business owner you want members of staff who are reliable.

Sure if you are genuinely sick there is no reason why you shouldn’t have off work. It’s probably best all around that you do however this comes back to maintaining your health through exercise. Those who take care of their health and maintain a balanced lifestyle are showing respect to the business.

Furthermore sick days in most job roles are absolutely counter productive to anything you are working on. You tend to become behind in your work, deliverables are off track and it makes life increasingly difficult for you as an employee. Not only this but the HR implications of sick days is mind numbing paperwork nobody needs!

Reliability is a huge one for me in business. You also earn value from your colleagues as they know they can count on you to be in the office everyday without fail.

Become an ideas man & write them down:

If you work within a digital role/marketing role then you will be expected to have some ideas to work with. Make sure you create a list of business changes you would like to make in the short/medium and long term. As you think of more ideas continue to write them down or send them to the business development manager.

If you show this type of enthusiasm and motivation towards the business then your value will sky rocket.

Back employees and ideas:

Not everyone is outgoing and forthright when it comes to ideas. You may be one of these type of people and if you are you should back up colleagues and their ideas if you feel they would benefit the business. Some of the best ideas only come to fruition because the outspoken member of the team raises awareness to an issue.

Others may not want to create tension or speak out of tone even if there is perfect rationale for what they are suggesting.It’s just not in their nature. By speaking up for them and suggesting their ideas to management you gain respect both from your employers and fellow employees. It may just need a different voice of reason.

What traits do you think an employee needs to become valued? How do you deal with millennials who don’t quite have the passion or enthusiasm to succeed?

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About the author

Ryan Gibson

Hey! I'm a 28 year old digital marketing guy residing in Leeds, England. My skill is in search marketing and I have gathered over 6 years experience of working on large multilingual campaigns for a number of FTSE 250 Organisations. After accepting a role with a business based in Singapore I began questioning traditional business practice and employee retention. This blog GenerationY.com was therefore born with focus on Y in the workplace. A millennial child at heart I aim to provide a voice for the 'misunderstood' generation and my goal is simply to change perception and corporate mind set on work/life attitudes; inspiring companies and individuals to seek change.


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