In the coming decade, millennials are going to occupy most of the existing workforce. One reason it is going to be difficult to motivate millennials is the ‘access’ to information and market.
As people get more access to information on various disciplines and read about others’ stories through books and blogs, they are getting ideas about different lifestyles that shapes their worldview. This has led them to ask some important questions such as ‘what’s the purpose of life?’, ‘why are we destroying the nature and environment?’, ‘why are we buying stuff we do not need and hoard them in our garage?’. These questions belong somewhere in the higher order needs of Maslow’s pyramid, and millennials are already asking these philosophical questions at the age of 30 while their parents/baby boomers never asked these questions until they were 50 or 60.
Moreover, because of access to several online communities and low cost of publishing, millennials are finding different outlets to practice other interests (passions and hobbies) and to fulfill other intellectual/emotional/psychological needs that their day jobs/work life is not providing.
In a way, this is a blessing in disguise for the HR department, since millennials are finding other avenues to motivate themselves. However, it is also, a reason to worry since it is hard to keep them in the workforce for long. People want to build up wealth quickly and pursue other experiences such as traveling the world, living in a different country, volunteering in less developed nations, and so on.
Apparently, the HR departments need to reinvent themselves in the next decade and probably need to become a counselor, friend, and a therapist to these millennials.