Avenue Bank: all generations are important – not just millennials

Each generation important, not just millennials

August 24, 2015

Engaging millennials in the workplace is a popular topic among the internal communication world.

High expectations of digital communication and eager for involvement, connecting with Generation Y is often construed as a hefty challenge.

Yet Avenue Bank approaches it differently. It understands the importance of millennials – but has concentrated on developing a culture of communication that involves every generation of employee.

The US-based concierge bank, which was named the “Best Bank to Work For 2014” award by American Banker magazine, has established numerous channels to ensure every employee across the business has a voice.

April Britt, the bank’s Chief People Officer, told bizjournals.com: “Millennials are driving a new mindset that prioritises work/life balance, and their career path often involves changing companies rather than one long-term corporate commitment.

“This generation not only craves a flexible work environment and recognition for their work, but also having their voices heard by the person at the top of the ladder, not just the person next on the rung.

“However, at Avenue Bank, we find that listening to the voices of our employees is important to every generation.

“We are intentionally building a company culture on open communication where our employees’ voices are heard, family values are lived out and opportunities for growth are offered.”

The bank inspires engagement through a number of initiatives. These include:

* Open door policy. Colleagues are actively encouraged to share ideas, opinions and issues with senior leadership throughout the year.
* Meet the CEO. Four times a year, the bank’s CEO Ron Samuels hosts an informal lunch for small groups of employees. Aimed at sharing ideas and generating feedback, no topic is off limits during these sessions.
* Culture Club. A small and diverse group of employees meet each month to give senior leadership valuable feedback on “proposed policies, communication and ideas”.

April added: “While millennials are a key influence in the way that companies are now listening and communicating, employees of all generations are participating in and benefiting from this progression of company culture.

“Companies with cultures that value employees’ ideas, insights and needs for development will be the ones that attract and retain the best talent – for every generation.”