Curt went into specific detail on how bakers could better attract and retail Gen Y as a workforce. “Gen Y wants to make a difference in everything they do,” said Steinhorst. “Bakers are feeding the world and have a terrific story to tell. This is a story that I believe Gen Y would want to be a part of if they only knew about it.”
Curt urged attendees to promote their company’s story when reaching out to Gen Y. “Sell the mission and purpose of your organization. Tell them how their role helps your bakery fulfill its mission; sell them on how their role makes a difference and what it is really like to work at your bakery. Gen Y wants to work somewhere they believe in, and this is where the baking industry has an advantage over other industries: no other industry literally feeds the nation and world. That’s a story Gen Y wants to be a part of.”
Curt spoke specifically on both successful recruitment strategies when trying to connect with Gen Y. Curt counseled to:
- Bring the job to life – be visual! Help them see how their job interacts and makes a difference within your organization.
- Show how your organization is diverse. Gen Y has grown up with diversity as a way of life. They will be more comfortable in a diverse workforce.
- Use social media appropriately. Specifically, be approachable on LinkedIn. Be someone they want to connect with and have as a mentor.
- Have a talent development program in place to sell to Gen Y. They want to see how they can move up within your company. If you show them the process, they will be more willing to follow it, as opposed to demanding your job after a week of being at your company!
- Constantly sell the mission and purpose of your organization. Make sure they have opportunities to see how what they do helps to fulfill the mission.
After getting them on board, Curt counseled attendees on how to retain your new Gen Y workforce:
- Give them ownership of a project, one that isn’t just busy work but will actually make a difference.
- Gen Y needs specific examples of what you expect. If you give them specific expectations, they will work hard for you and your company.
- Constantly give feedback. They shouldn’t only hear from the boss if it’s bad news. A pat on the back congratulating them on a good effort will often go further than any other form of saying thank you (including a pay raise, since money is not a primary driver for Gen Y).
- Make sure they understand they are part of the team, and again, show them how what they do helps the team be successful.
For more information on ABA efforts to attract and retain talent for the baking industry, please contact Cory Martin, ABA Director of Government Relations, at email@example.com or (202) 789-0300.