How to Give Feedback if Your Office Dog is a Millennial

This is part two of our series on giving your office dog their performance review. Please find the first guide here.

Congratulations! By deciding to give your office dog performance feedback, you’ve made the pivotal first step in developing your office dog’s career. In our first guide, we discussed ways to approach the feedback and review process by giving examples of how to frame discussions and ways to initiate conversations. But there’s something very important that we failed to give you advice on.

SEE ALSO: Ultimate Guide to Employee Check-Ins

What do you do if your office dog is a millennial?! As we’ve all read in headlines from the New York Times and basically every other publication on the internet, millennials can’t seem to do anything right. From bar soap, to the housing market, millennials are killing absolutely everything all of our older generations worked so hard to build.

On top of everything millennials are ruining, they can’t seem to take feedback like all of the other, better generations once could. And if you think this only applies to humans, well, you’re just wrong. This applies to your millennial office dogs, too.

We figured that you’ve probably read enough on how to give feedback to Millennial human employees, so, here’s what we recommend doing if your office dog is a millennial.

First, you need to know that your millennial office dog is very concerned with your perception of them. In order to ease their worries, be sure you are giving instant, consistent, and constructive feedback on a regular basis. Leaving them in the dark about their performance will cause them to be distracted and in a constant state of panic, which diminishes their productivity and overall performance.

Your millennial office dog is very concerned with your perception of them. Click To Tweet

Leadership Potential & Coaching

Despite all of their undesirable characteristics, data has shown that millennial (dogs) will be great leaders. Because of this, millennial (dogs) will also not hesitate to leave a job if they don’t see leadership opportunities in their future. In order to retain and keep your millennial dogs engaged, you need to foster their potential with feedback and consistent coaching.

Positive reinforcement is the best way to coach your millennial office dog, but don’t be afraid to offer improvement feedback.

Your millennial office dog will assume that they are right in all of their actions, so it’s important to give this feedback in order to course correct and ensure they are aware that they don’t in fact know everything.

Your feedback needs to go beyond “sit, stay, good dog” and evolve into more developmental and constructive advice. 

The most important thing about coaching millennial dogs is making sure they think your feedback was their idea. Coaching, instead of resolving, will help your office dog work through some of their behaviors on their own, which will help them later on in their careers.

The Participation Trophy Generation

Millennials grew up in a time where everyone was praised for just showing up – hence the “participation trophy” reference. Because of this, it can be difficult to engage them and increase their productivity. In order to be the best millennial dog manager, you will need to show constant recognition and praise.

Praise is like air to Millennials – they can’t live without it, so be sure to “ABP” (always be praising).

Whether it’s verbal, or through a tool like Reflektive’s Real-Time Feedback, your Millennial dogs’ retention rate will go through the roof if you remember to show appreciation and recognition for their efforts.

As a millennial dog manager, you will need to show constant recognition and praise. Click To Tweet

Take Your Millennial Office Dog for a Walk

Weekly 1-on-1 meetings are popular times to deliver feedback, so consider taking your 1-on-1 to the next level and try a walking meeting. Not only will your millennial office dog love being outside, but the opportunity to visit the nearby park will brighten their mood and open their mind to the feedback you are about to deliver.

HBR stated that “walking meetings lead to more honest exchanges with employees and are more productive than traditional sit-down meetings.”

On top of that, millennials are notorious for “prioritizing experiences over stuff”, so if you frame the 1-on-1 discussion as an outdoor experience, they will be all-in. Just don’t forget the ball.

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We hope this was helpful in navigating the complicated world of managing millennials. Stay tuned for future advice on office dogs and office humans. 

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