Career Advice Career Doctor

Tips for dealing with the challenges of managing a team of millennials


I’m stuck with a young team — most of them are in their 20s. And…well what can I say? Too many of them are entitled, arrogant and unappreciative.

I have one guy who’s always late. He brings in a lot of business, and a lot of clients love him. But because of this he thinks he can get away with anything. For me, I don’t really care that he’s occasionally late for work as long as his work done. But the fact that he makes clients and colleagues wait for him is disrespectful, and he refuses to remedy his behaviour.

Another member of my team tries hard, but something isn’t clicking. Her performance is mediocre, to the point where she’s not really serving a good purpose in her role. She has a good work ethic, but that doesn’t really matter if I frequently find myself having to fix her mistakes or re-assigning assignments to other staff. She’s also incredibly whiny about her “bad luck”.

The third stooge is the most ambitious, but not the best team player. She’s amazing when she wants to be. But if there’s work she doesn’t want to do she’ll pawn it off on someone else or outright refuse. She even poaches projects or dominates group efforts. She also isn’t above throwing anyone else in the team under the bus, and is the first to report on her coworkers.

Those are just three examples. In general, I find a lot of my team demand instant success and rewards. Few of them appreciate the value of dedication and consistent hard work. They can’t seem to understand that it takes persistent toil over years of effort to earn the kind of lifestyles most of them think they deserve to live.

Sometimes I think about a firing spree, but that’s been vetoed by my bosses, who don’t want the headache of mass turnover.