What Can You Expect From a Newly Hired College Graduate?

Michelle Benjamin – CEO of Benjamin Enterprises


This past weekend marked the beginning of the college graduation season. If you are an employer with openings to fill, your will have a variety of new potential employees searching for a job. So as an employer, what should you keep in mind during the hiring process and in those first few months post-hire?

Remember Their Age – New graduates were born in the early 90’s. They are classified as Generation “Y” or “Millennials”. They were in elementary school when 9/11 occurred. They most likely haven’t seen or used a rotary phone or a record player. Why does this matter? Points of reference that are common place to older workers will leave Millennials bewildered.

Give Them Structure – Because of the way that most were brought up, Millennials are used to structure. They participated in a lot of extracurricular activities that required creating and adhering to a structure. Clearly define the work hours, expected daily activities, assignments and measurements for success.

Provide a Mentor – A lot of the new graduates will have little to no work experience. They may not have had to work during their high school and college careers. They will have little understanding of how an office works, what is expected of them, and what is appropriate behavior. By pairing them with a mentor, they can learn the ropes. This doesn’t have to be a long-term mentorship; even 3 – 6 months can provide a benefit to both the new employee and the business.

Make Them Part of the Team – Millennials are used to working as part of a team. Whether it was as part of a sports team or on a team project, they have experience working as a unit. Make sure they have a “team” to be a part of. Left on their own, they will have a higher chance of failing to meet expectations.

Over communicate – This age group is used to being given directions, praise and feedback. Make sure that you are doing this on a regular basis.

Take advantage of their technical knowledge – These employees have been using computers, the Internet and cell phones for several years. They are second nature to them. Why not take advantage of that expertise? Get them involved in your company’s Social Media image, or get their input on your corporate website.

A diverse team is an asset to any business. At times there can be struggles between the different generations in the workplace. By recognizing that different generations work differently, you can eliminate the tension and ensure an easier transition for new graduates into your business.