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"Working" with Millennials

September 24, 2017

I am having great difficulty finding workers in my construction world.  As I have said before, my generation encouraged our kids to get "white collar" jobs.  What turned out to be unfortunate; our kids listened.  Even more unfortunate, our kids told their kids to get "white collar" jobs.

 

The result of all that advice is, if you are trying to build a house, well, good luck.

 

My employer is getting to a point in his life where he needs to start thinking about who is going to take over the company at the time of his retirement.  My employer (let's call him Bob) has five kids.

 

I have been working with 2 of Bob's kids this past summer.  The kid's are earning spending money. learning a little bit about the business and getting out of bed.  Each one of the boys brought a friend to work with them.

 

All four boys were more than adequate workers.  However, getting out of bed; they were not good at.  Come to think of it they weren't very good at staying at work either,  Getting to work before 9:00 and staying until 3:30 was not an option.  OK, working five days a week was an unattainable goal also.

 

One set of the boys has returned to school, while the other set has decided to wait until the next semester to return to school.  This set of boys have decided to save some money delivering pizzas and playing semi-pro gaming tournaments (I didn't no what gaming tournaments were.  Who knew you could make money playing video games?) and working construction when convenient.

 

Last week was convenient for only one boy and only one day.

 

Now that I think about it, it really wasn't that convenient for that boy either.  Maybe I'm being too harsh.  He was at  work by 10:45.  When I asked why he was alone, my helper informed me, "Cody cannot work outside today, he just got a new tattoo yesterday and sunlight will fade the colors."  Sadly, I saw the logic in that answer.  I started to wonder what was happening to me.  I didn't want to say, "Maybe Cody should just wear a shirt with long sleeves."  I started to  understand Cody's problem.  What if the tattoo was not on his arm?  Think about that!

 

Eventually, I found myself in the office.  I thought it might be fun to share Cody's tattoo story with Bob.  Bob was amused by the story and turned it into a teaching moment.  Bob told me, "Monner, you've got to treat these millennials differently than other employees.  You need to call them every morning and make sure they are coming to work,  Huge companies are spending millions teaching supervisors how to work with millennials.  Do you want their phone numbers?"

 

I tried to remember if any time in my career I needed to be called to remind me to come to work.  I couldn't remember any time that happen.  I started to think about if that would work for me now.  Maybe Bob could call me and ask, "Hey Monner, are you coming in today?"  Yeah, but not till 10:45, I made fifty bucks last night playing Excalibur Killers.  I was up a little late.

This millennial problem is my fault, I told my children (both batches) get "white collar" jobs.

 

Our crazy lives!

 

Monner

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