young team

The first hire for any entrepreneur is essential: he or she must be the extension of you, your ideal complement. As far as efficiency is concerned, a 20-something is your perfect first hire.

Meg Jay, Ph.D., argues that our 20s are when we build a foundation that defines the rest of our life. And Colleen Sharen notes that a 20-something's "secret sauce" is work ethic, citing a York University study examining the decline in work ethic.

Here's why a 20-something is your perfect first hire, and a few key things you need to know to manage this age group.

  1. We're hungry. Millennials are ambitious. Fueled by our parents' encouragement, we grew up thinking we could do or be anything we wanted. Reward your Gen Y employees by challenging them, setting attractive rewards and supercharging career advancement for good performance.
  2. We're flexible. Most 20-something workers haven't built up ingrained work habits, which means that we can adapt to nearly any situation. In today's work environment, we won't be frightened off by the prospect of wearing many hats -- so long as we understand the significance of each role we play.
  3. We're cheap. Let's face it: someone with a few years of work experience is going to cost a lot less in salary than someone with 20 years under his or her belt. Many of us are happy to be contractors, and will trade benefits for the freedom to choose our own schedule and work location.
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