Hiring and maintaining a strong sales staff can be one of your greatest challenges as a manager. And with the available pool of talent shifting to a new generation - Generation Y - the old ways of doing business are changing. Gen-Y employees require different approaches to attract, retain, and motivate them within your dealership.
Everyone is quick to point out Gen-Y's shortcomings and idiosyncrasies, but they possess some very desirable attributes from a business standpoint. They're confident, goal-oriented, collaborative, and civic-minded. And according to Business and Professional Women's Foundation, they're going to account for approximately 75 percent of the global workforce by 2025. So working to understand and prepare young professionals better is critical not only to your dealership's success, but the success of the entire automotive industry. Here are three ways to better manage your Gen-Y employees:.
1) Use social media to find the right employees
Gen-Y workers do not respond to help wanted ads nearly as much as previous generations. To reach the largest talent pool - and find the most qualified personnel for your dealership - place job posts on Facebook, Twitter, Craigslist, or local university job boards. You may have to wade through more candidates, but making sure that you find the right person will reduce turnover and save you time in the long run.
2) Coach to each person's strengths
While this idea is true for all workers, it is especially relevant with Gen-Y employees. These salespeople don't generally respond well to authoritative management styles, but instead need managers to be more nurturing and empathic. If they feel respected and purposeful in their work, they'll produce at much higher levels.
3) Find out the why
Why do they sell? Obviously Gen-Y workers sell to make money, but equally important to them are things like growth opportunity, freedom, and job security. While it is unrealistic to cater fully to each of these needs, think about taking steps to accommodate them on some level. Try to make the workplace more fun and enjoyable; build relationships between all workers; consider enacting a more flat-rate pay structure.
In the highly competitive automotive marketplace, dealerships are beginning to recognize that their differentiator is their people. The Gen-Y is here whether you like it or not. Take advantage of what they have to offer and make them your competitive advantage.