When we consider the differences in learning preferences across generations, it is clear that training for millennials requires an overhaul. Classroom learning is unlikely to cut it with this generation. Instead, we should be focused on delivering training materials in a way that is compatible with the digital age.

How Does Millennial Training Differ From Previous Generations?

Millennials access data on tablets and smartphones every day. Integrating these technologies into training can, therefore, boost effectiveness and make training feel more organic. Then, microlearning opportunities can reinforce training by providing small bursts of information that learners can access and complete within short periods of time – during the train ride to work, for example. The ability to access additional information will also support employees who want expand their knowledge beyond the basic course content, allowing those who are driven to push themselves further.

Millennials are typically associated with a drive to succeed and develop themselves. They want to become leaders, either unofficially within their team or by progressing into managerial and executive roles. Through business simulations and activities designed to replicate aspects of a business or scenario, millennial employees can truly try their hand at leadership and determine if it is right for them.

Why Are Business Simulations a Good Choice for Millennial Training?

Business simulations can also allow organizations to track progress and results, which can, in turn, lead to the identification of key individuals for succession planning. Furthermore, incorporating self-assessment provides individuals with the opportunity to better understand the outcome of their training, identify areas of improvement and set personal goals to ensure they progress at their preferred rate.

When training millennials, it is critical to use the most effective channels. In the past, everyone was often trained in the same way. However, with the constant improvement of technology, businesses can now personalize training and obtain more effective results and ROI.

Business simulations are proven to generate competitiveness, an attribute of many millennials. Their desire to succeed is matched by a desire to learn and progress rapidly. Simulations, which allow groups of employees to simulate running a business across the course of the day, can help millennials understand team management, employee leadership and complex business challenges.

When it comes to leadership, there are few training courses that are comparable to real-world experiences. With simulations, millennials can review their learning in real time, apply their new skills and experience first-hand the benefits and pitfalls of working in a particular way. This experience provides them with a practical skill set, which they can transfer to their daily work. Simulations also provide an opportunity to test leadership styles and establish what works best for them.

Finally, business simulations are ideal for supporting millennials in better understanding corporate goals and aligning their everyday activities with them. Establishing this knowledge can drive them to consider approaching situations in an alternative way, which will result in improved outcomes.

Thanks to millennials, there has been a big shift in the way employees want to learn and how they engage with and retain their learning. They do not respond well to day after day of slide presentations or to purely digital learning. To engage and train millennials, especially developing leaders, incorporate a blend of solutions, including short instructor-led sessions, on-demand microlearning, video, virtual classes and experiential business simulations.