Bruce held our partners spellbound for two and a half hours.
Graham Baragwanath, Managing Partner (fmr.), Deloitte Consulting Canada
May 4, 2015

Hiring Season is Here

From Bruce

Happy Spring! It’s hiring season again. As you think about hiring today’s newly minted members of the Class of 2015, keep this in mind: Every step of the way, Gen Zers are going to try to fit their work situation into the life experience they are trying to create for themselves. The thing is that, in the earlier life and career stages, this is often a moving target. According to our research:

  • Sometimes new young workers just want a place to hide out and collect a paycheck. I call that “just a job.”
  • Sometimes new young workers are taking stock and trying to figure out what they really want to do next. I call this a weigh station job.
  • Sometimes new young workers look at work as a place to hang out with friends. I call this a peer group job.
  • Sometimes new young workers find a job opportunity that aligns with their deep interests and priorities.
  • Sometimes new young workers see a job as an opportunity to work like crazy for a period of time with the chance of a giant payoff.
  • Sometimes what a new young person might value in a job is an unusual opportunity to meet an idiosyncratic need or want. I call this a needle-in-a-haystack job.
  • The very best case is what I refer to as a self building job:When new young workers look at the job as a chance to make an impact while building themselves up with your resources.

Stay strong!



MANAGEMENT CHALLENGE #4: When Welcoming a New Member to the Existing Team

From the first day, you need to take 100% responsibility for making sure the new employee is welcomed properly and given the on-boarding support and up-to-speed coaching she will need to become a fully functioning member of the team. Start by scheduling a lot of one-on-ones at the outset: Maybe two per day initially, once at the beginning of the workday and again at the end of the day. With a concrete on-boarding plan, clear learning objectives, and supporting materials—-and one or two daily one-on-ones—you will be amazed at how quickly you can get a new employee on board, up to speed, and operating at full capacity. In the process, you will also introduce that new employee to the wonders of high-structure, high-substance dialogue. Even if you meet just once a day for the first three weeks, the new employee will be in the habit.

Make sure the rest of the new employee’s schedule is also highly structured for the first several weeks, not just in one-on-ones with you, but also in regular one- on-ones with everybody else. Fill up most of the new employee’s schedule in the first few days with one-on-ones with all those key players inside and outside the team. And provide a learning agenda for those one-on-ones. After a few weeks of one-on-ones with everybody, the new employee will have established ongoing dialogues with every individual with whom she will be working. At first, each dialogue will help the new employee get up to speed. Over time, the dialogues will transform and what they’ll be discussing is the actual work they are doing together now.


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The 27 Challenges Managers Face is now available at


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It is graduation season again. How will you create a compelling recruiting message to attract the best of today’s newest new young workforce (“Generation Z” those second wave Millennials born 1990-99), who comprise the vast majority of the Class of 2015? Based on our research, here’s what they want:

  1. Money: Much more important than the starting salary, Gen Zers want to know that if they work smarter or harder or faster, they will be rewarded indirect proportion to the value they add.
  2. Flexible schedules: Gen Zers want to know that as long as they are meeting goals and deadlines, they will have some control over their own schedules.
  3. Flexible location and some control over their work-space.
  4. Marketable skills: Gen Zers are looking for formal and informal training opportunities to build skills and knowledge faster than they would become obsolete.
  5. Access to decision makers: Gen Zers want to start building relationships with important leaders, managers, clients, customers, vendors, or coworkers.
  6. Recognition and credit: Gen Zers want to know someone is keeping track and they are scoring points every step of the way as they produce tangible results.
  7. The chance to prove themselves: Gen Zers want to know that they will have an area of responsibility they can use as their personal proving ground.
  8. Some creativity: Gen Zers want to know what’s up to them and what’s not, so they know where they have the chance for some creative expression.

Build your recruiting message around these key factors Gen Zers
are looking for in a job. But take caution: Don’t try to sell these things to Gen Zers if you can’t really offer them. Overselling the job is a big mistake. If you sell them a self-building opportunity falsely, they will quickly turn the job into a safe harbor or a way station or a peer group experience. Instead, clarify expectations at the outset by answering the fundamental questions that are really on their minds: “Exactly what will you expect me to do today, tomorrow, next week, this month, next month, and the month after that? And exactly what do you have to offer me in the form of financial and nonfinancial rewards today, tomorrow, next week, this month, next month, and the month after that?”


Bridging the Soft Skills Gap is coming to a bookstore near you September 15, 2015. Follow the links below to pre-order your copy today!


Recruiting Millennials

Recruiting: Lesson 11