(By Georgia Beasley) Technology has allowed for more sharing in all aspects of Millennials’ lives. We share photos on the “cloud,” we ride-share in Ubers, and we share our once-personal moments through social media. This approach is no different in the workplace and exactly the environment that allows Millennials to excel.
There are few absolute statements that can be made when it comes to describing the entire generation of Millennials. I’ve found that when most people, myself included, discuss Millennials, the stereotypes can become overwhelming. For example, one of my favorites is: Millennials love technology. Now, what most people think is that every Millennial is capable of being the head of an IT department; however, this is quite false. Although I may not be able to go a day without social media, and it may feel like I’ve had a cell phone since I was in diapers, I’m actually like everyone else – when something goes wrong, I go straight for the power button.
That being said, Millennials have become experts at connecting through technology in meaningful ways while also embracing and understanding its importance in everyday life. We have an intuitive and instinctive approach, and what’s best is that we are willing to share that knowledge with non-Millennials. While some believe technology isolates us from building relationships, Millennials understand the benefits of connecting and collaborating in groups. We realize that the future workplace is not limited to a physical address, and because of certain platforms we can multitask like never before – leading to a more efficient and productive workday. Using technology as a benefit can help our industry. It has now become easier, faster, and more cost efficient to share ideas and collaborate in the workplace.
Here are three ideas for how radio could use millennials to become more relevant.
#1) Take a fresh look at efficiency in your local and regional communication. A talented Millennial sales manager informed me that his cluster will use technology platforms on collaboration programs, such as Google Drive and i-Cloud. These programs allow multiple clusters to work as one and share successful promotions from market to market.
#2) As a GM, my second suggestion would be to allow Millennials to ask “why” more. We have a natural desire to understand the “why” behind everything and, if cultivated properly, that can create opportunities for your cluster to refocus on process and overall success to meet your goals. The idea of collaboration and refocusing has become more and more popular with Millennials and could promote a healthier cluster culture.
#3) My final idea is for the entire radio industry. I suggest we create a Millennial Super Team with a common goal of making Millennials more relevant. Each broadcast company could connect its most talented Millennial and encouraged them to work together to help solve industry-wide issues. How powerful could our medium be if radio worked as a group and had all of its talent sharing ideas? On a local level, the GM could select a talented Millennial from each department to work together to make the cluster brand, events, and digital footprint more relevant.
I recently heard about a study done where five people were individually challenged with solving a problem and while they all came up with different answers, none were correct. Those same five people were then grouped together and given the same challenge to which they developed a strategy and ultimately solved the problem correctly. The reality is, radio may not be the shiny new object it once was, but it hasn’t lost its grit. If our industry can embrace the benefits that sharing with technology provides and encourage collaboration, we can develop better solutions to our current needs.
Georgia Beasley is the director of TopicPulse strategic initiatives at Futuri Media and can be reached at [email protected]