Finding and retaining workers can be a challenge in the glass and glazing industry. Dustin Anderson, owner of Anderson Glass in Waco, Texas, and the go-to-glass guy on HGTV’s show “Fixer Upper,” led a discussion on how to hire millennials in San Antonio last week.
Anderson stated that 35 percent of the workforce is made up of millennials, and the conversation around these young workers needs to change. Instead of changing the mentality of millennials, he said it’s necessary to change the mentality of the business.
He told the crowd that what sets millennials apart from the older workforce is the instant gratification they are seeking. This is prompting many millennials to live online and on social media. Anderson said the best way to reach these individuals for employment is to advertise businesses on social media. There are even ways to optimize searches on social media to figure out exactly who will meet a company’s qualifications.
Going further, Anderson said that companies need to reach the younger generation before they are convinced that a four-year college is their only option. This means going to career days and interacting with career counselors in high schools.
The culture needs to change as well, said Anderson. The younger generation is being offered jobs with “trendy” amenities, and the industry needs to step up to that plate.
“I’m not telling you to get a ping pong table in your break room, but I’m not telling you not to get a ping pong table,” joked Anderson.
He then went into the art of retaining employees. He told the crowd that the best way to retain employees is to create a feeling of impact. In other words, to make sure employees know they are making an impact at the company. He also added that companies need to allow for individuality. One way Anderson does this is by having a few different employee shirts, and letting his employees choose which one they want to wear. He even allowed his employees to design one of their new company shirts.
But to stay prepared, Anderson said to always be hiring. He even has a “hiring” sign in the window of his shop constantly.
Anderson concluded by telling the crowd that the best way to be successful is to share best practices with other in the industry.
Providing them with software tools that make their jobs easier and more efficient might also make the industry more appealing, as opposed to phone systems and fax machines.