Want Better Talent? Think Community Before Bottom Line
Recent articles, especially in the restaurant and hospitality industry, note that the social entrepreneurial movement and the millennial generation are a perfect match.
QSR Magazines’s article “Restaurants Can Change the World” points out:“Increasingly, we’re seeing people aligning their purchasing behavior—especially younger people, the millennial generation—with companies that share a set of values with them,” says Jay Tandan, Assistant Global Activism Manager for Ben & Jerry’s.”
When your business reaches out to lead a social change, you are not only helping society as a whole; you are also speaking to a generation seeking something bigger than money – they want to make a difference.
According to “Restaurants Can Change the World,” there are three main areas to consider. I want to expand on those:
Traditionally, we think reaching out to your community is a one-time “thing” – like serving at a soup kitchen over the holidays. Today, we are talking about exacting change on a consistent, almost daily, basis.
Research the shared values that appear in your community and pursue ways to reach out. The millennials on your team are an excellent resource to see what’s going on in the community.
You can make an impact on your community one customer at a time through additional channels such as fundraisers or increasing your patron’s quality of life.
For example, Mazi Mas, a London restaurant, hires migrant and refugee women to cook traditional, ethnic dishes handed to them by their mothers. The cooks get paid, gain experience, and connect with their community.Mazi Mas’ customers experience a cultural heritage and awareness of the plight of fellow humans.
Again, having team members from the millennial generation can be a plus for exploring new ideas like these, not to mention their drive to make that impact.
Millennials in your organization may be a “good thing” for ideas on how to reach out and build a social enterprise for your company, but what better social impact can you have than to focus on training those millennials on your team?
I have discussed before on the benefits of being flexible and the trend toward contract employment, but while you have those team members on your team, why not develop a training system that empowers them to grow in their long-term careers?
Consider modifying your current training to empower your employees. For example, Shake Shack hires based on their “litmus test,” but the real strength is in how they offer paths to advancement, not to mention skills, that benefits the employee, which reveals itself in the form of retention.
Many millennials want to help solve a problem, which is a construct of social entrepreneurship. You can harness this talent and drive when you look past your bottom line.
Remember, you can thrive in the pursuit of your passion and excellence.