Managing Millennials: IARE Hot Topic
Arise executives attended a valuable and compelling conference earlier this fall with leading travel and hospitality companies. The sponsor: International Association of Reservation Executives (IARE), a non-profit trade association whose worldwide membership includes executives and managers from a variety of companies in the reservations and customer contact travel industry. The conference is truly a paradox insomuch as most of the attendees are competitors, but the vibe is incredibly collaborative.
One of the main hot topics of the conference was managing millennials. This demographic often struggles as traditional employees as they value greater flexibility in how, when, and where they work.
A thought leader at the conference observed that millennials “can’t be bribed and can’t be bullied” and schedule adherence means very little to many of them. One leading hotel company executive suggested that they have had to change adherence policies three times in the last year because of this reality.
Last year, the Harvard Business Review published The Dawning of the Age of Flex Labor (Andrei Hagiu and Rob Biederman). The authors assert that “the prevailing paradigm of people working as full-time employees for a single organization has outlived its usefulness.” Perhaps this plays well into the relevance of the Arise platform. The Arise Platform provides millennials with a means of controlling their own destiny, and a first step to seeing how far they can go on their own. It de-risks the proposition of starting a call center business.
Hagiu and Biederman write, “There are two reasons flexible work systems are now plausible. The first is societal values. Work-life balance and family-friendly scheduling are much more important to today’s workers, and companies are increasingly willing to accommodate them. The second is technology.” Advances in the last five years have greatly improved the ease with which people can work and collaborate remotely and market their services.
Managing millennials may just be as simple as allowing them the opportunity to be their own boss in the contact center world.
About the Author
Scott Bell, Vice President, Business Development – Travel & Hospitality is a sales and marketing executive with deep career roots in Travel and Hospitality. Scott is a graduate from the University of Wisconsin and upon graduation did a two-year stint in non-profit work. Bit by the travel bug in 1986, Scott’s first travel industry job was with Thomson Vacations in Cancun, Mexico as a Resort Representative. Since then his jobs have included positions with cruise lines, hotels, car rental companies and retail/wholesale operators. Additionally, Scott’s has camped alongside the travel industry as a sales executive in online travel research and more recently contact center outsourcing. He is married with two adult daughters and lives in suburban Chicago.
You can follow and engage with Scott via his Twitter stream dedicated to travel and hospitality, branding, and customer experience: @scottco