Wednesday 6 April 2011

Social Business Summit: Millennial trends for HR


DSCN2951  I’ve recently attended Dachis Group’s Social Business Summit in London (see my two posts at Social Advantage) and thought I’d post here on one of the sessions which was presented by Charles Hull at Archrival.

The sessions was titled Social Marketing to Millennials which didn’t get my hopes up.  I’m not a Gen Y denier (like some) but I tend to think I know as much as I need to on this subject.  However, it was actually quite an interesting session.

Hull talked about tracking trends emerging in the millennial generation (for example, not so long ago, ‘The Facebook’) which tend, without too long a delay, to have a big impact on the rest of us as well.  These trends currently include:

  • Life tracking - fun ways for millennials to track, measure and get analytics on their data (Hull mentioned Bedpost as an example).  There’s an obvious link to performance management here – eg by providing access to tools like Rypple to enable millennials and others to track their performance.
  • Middle class of fame – noting that the 15 minutes of fame ideology has gone from an aspiration to an expectation.  This can be about fame within an individual’s social circle – not necessarily on a national / global scale.  The HR link is to recognition – providing a thanks for performance on a public not just a personal level.
  • Digidentity – the use of social channels to establish individuals’ identities and demonstrate their social currency.  For example, there is a growing trend for millennials to manage their Facebook profiles as a sort of resume – they’re savvy about protecting their identify within different circles of their network.  They’re also savvy about using new social tools to share achievements and accomplishments.  There’s an obvious link to organisation’s use of social sites within recruitment, but the organisational impact is perhaps clear.  But perhaps there’s an opportunity to allow millennials and others to use corporate networking sites to meet this need.
  • Tech-eyed view - every moment is ripe for posting and sharing – millennials are always looking for the next profile pic, and like to use digital tools to entertain, assist and inform themselves and their friends.  Hull took us through some examples of social gaming and how they can be used for marketing purposes.  And I’ve previously posted on the use of games for organisational use.  The key for Hull is to make these games easy to learn but difficult to master (“”There’s nothing fun about learning, what’s fun is applying what you’ve learned”).


See my two posts from the Summit on Social Advantage, and two more on further social business conferences that I’ll be participating in:



  • Consulting - Research - Speaking  - Training -  Writing
  • Strategy  -  Talent  -  Engagement  -  Change and OD
  • Contact  me to  create more  value for  your business
  • jon  [dot] ingham [at] strategic [dash] hcm [dot] com



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