How many millennials (everyone born in the 1980s and 90s) work in your organisation at the moment? Chances are, that this generation will make up as much as 75% of the workforce by 2025. This challenges HR departments to already start adapting to the different needs of millennials.
What makes millennials different?
- Born into a technology-rich world, they are digital natives who are tech-savvy.
- They use different technologies every day, absorbing digital information very well.
- They’re very eager to grow, learn new things and improve their skills.
- If a job doesn’t stimulate them, they are quick to look for another that does.
- They prefer an active learning style, expecting regular feedback and rewards.
The big question is, how to keep millennials engaged in L&D activities. It’s simple really: Make it a game! Most millennials have spent countless hours playing video games and have gotten accustomed to a gamified approach to exploration and learning.
Why gamification in training works so well with millennials
The hero’s journey:
Every game makes the player the hero of a story. And every good hero is on a mission, facing challenges that need to be overcome. Millennials will be more engaged when they understand their ‘mission.’ They want to know why they are doing something, how it’s meaningful and what their impact is.
Part of every great game are tricky challenges that test the player’s limits. Gamers fail most of the time, but still find the experience enjoyable. Why? Because they can easily try again and figure out what works. In games, they don’t have to be afraid of failure. It’s a safe environment to practice.
Millennials have grown up with multi-player games and learned that teams achieve more than a single person would. Gamified training is an excellent way for teams to bond and build trust. Going through a learning experience together, solving problems and relying on each other will have an impact that lasts.
Millennials expect immediate feedback. They want to see the results of their actions, feel a sense of progress and achievement. That’s what will keep them going. Gamified training is perfectly designed to provide that, for example, through leaderboards.
How to integrate gamification into training
Simulations are one way to gamified training. They build the bridge between theory and practice while providing a highly engaging learning environment. A great variety of topics can be taught efficiently through simulations, for example, Stakeholder Management, Strategy Execution, Change Management, and Leadership.
UK-based OSOSIM could be your partner for simulations. The company was founded back in 2008 to develop simulations that “focus on the human side of business – helping people to develop the interpersonal skills that are needed to succeed.” In an interview, the founders reflect on their 10-year experience in the L&D field and the challenges that organisations are facing today. Click here for the article.
What is your organisation doing to cater to millennials? Let us know in the comments below!