The generation born after 1980, referred to as Millennials, have a completely different view of career and family life than their predecessors. They have just become the majority of the workforce in the US. Their shift in thinking creates a unique opportunity for companies of all sizes. With increasingly sophisticated employees who are not willing to settle for the status quo, it’s vital that companies change and adapt, or they risk losing their most valuable asset. But, what, exactly, do Millennials in the Workplace want? It’s not what you may expect from a tech savvy group of young workers. In fact, some of their demands might surprise you.
Work and Family Balance
According to research performed by Bentley University, both male and female Millennials are more interested in striking a balance between their work and family time than previous generations. They are not willing to sacrifice time with children, spouses and other loved ones to climb the corporate ladder. In addition, round three-quarters of men and women say they are not willing to jeopardize their personal values in the name of their careers. Millennials also value both maternity and paternity leave, citing it as one of their top concerns. Employers that are sensitive and responsive to this need are more likely to retain talent than those that aren’t.
This segment of the workforce places a premium on the atmosphere of their workplace. Collaborative, mutually respectful, and appreciative environments attract and retain them. They also have a strong need to be a valuable member of the team, but it’s not all about personal recognition. In fact, around 84 percent of Millennials have the desire to make a positive impact on the world around them through their work. Most of these younger workers are not willing to deal with unpleasant situations, disrespect or other dramas in the workplace simply to advance their careers. They are quick to change employers should the circumstances become too difficult.
Career Advancement Timeline
For past generations, the goal was to get your foot in the door of a company, start at ground level and work your way up the ladder as quickly as possible. It was considered a badge of honor, something to aspire to. For this generation, however, it’s not as important to race to the finish line. In fact, most prefer the option to slowly work their way towards higher levels within the company or industry. Therefore, it is a wise move for companies to offer multiple, individualized paths to leadership positions in their workforce. The reality is, however, that over a third of Millennials simply are not interested in leadership roles because it takes time and energy away from their families.
Millennials, while fully aware of the need to secure and retain a well-paid position with a solid company, are not willing to sacrifice much. They demand a workplace that allows them to learn, grow and prosper without taking a moment away from their family lives. If you’d like more information about Millennials in the workplace, or if you have thoughts to share, contact us. We would love to hear from you.