Millennials Not Paying Attention in Meetings?



What is a small business owner/manager to do when Millennials don’t share your enthusiasm for projects during meetings? Oh sure they are paying attention…to their smart phones and getting status updates about the upcoming party on the weekend. The challenge is how to make the meetings more engaging.

When I talk to other small business owners in the GTA, they all express frustration in getting Millennials to pay attention. It is easier said than done when competing against the likes of smart phones, where people receive emails and status updates about their friends lives seemingly endlessly. What is a GTA small business-medium business owner to do?

Make content more engaging for Millennials

The question is not how to get Millennials to shut off their electronic devises, rather how do I make my content more captivating and engaging? Long gone are the days when a manager can drone on for an hour about the latest trends affecting the bottom line. Then expect the plan to be implemented right away. At best this manager will see her plan put into action half heartedly and not to the full potential of its intended purpose.

Tell a story

Everyone likes a good story, however keep it short and relevant to the topic at hand. Professional speakers often weave a short story into their presentation to keep the audience awake and engaged.

Ask questions

Questions cement attention, require thought and sometimes an answer from someone in the audience.

Use pictures

Everyone loves pictures and is easier to convey a point in a picture rather than bullet points. I can describe a Ferrari but when a picture is shown, then everyone sees what I am talking about.

Be shocking and unpredictable

The element of surprise can grab the most diehard smart phone user.

Bare essentials

Strip the message down to its most essential parts and leave out as much industry jargon as possible. This will make the meeting shorter and hold everyone’s attention span longer.

Seek input

Seeking input from attendees ahead of time to help create the agenda and the content.

Smart phones are here to stay and the problem of people not paying attention in meetings will only get worse if not resolved. Resolve today to make your meetings more meaningful. Studies have shown that engaging today’s employees more, means they will have a sense of ownership. Which will translate into more productive staff which means higher profits. A word of warning though, it will not happen overnight. It will take a concerted effort to accomplish this.