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Managing the Millennials, 2nd Edition by Mick Ukleja, Chip Espinoza

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Chapter 3The Effective Managers versus the Challenged Managers

Our research design called on the human resource department of each organization in our study to provide us with three managers who were considered to be effective at managing Millennials and three managers who were perceived to struggle with managing Millennials. We conducted one-on-one interviews with each participant and then facilitated a focus group among the six managers.

We were surprised to learn that both populations (the effective and the challenged) perceived the Millennials similarly. Words such as entitled, brash, and smart were common in all of the interview transcripts. The focus groups produced no discord or strong disagreement between the groups. Both the effective and challenged managers shared frustrations and experiences that aligned. Many of the participants left their interviews commenting that the experience was therapeutic for them.

If both populations of managers perceived Millennial employees the same way and had similar experiences with them, then what differentiated the good from the challenged? We begin by reporting what did not differentiate the managers. As we stated in Chapter 1, many believe that parenting has shifted from a focus on training to nurturing. One of our early hypotheses was that women would be better at managing Millennials than men. However, our data did not support such a notion. We also thought that managers who were parents of Millennials would be better at managing ...

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