What Millennials Want From Their Careers

Those born between the 1980’s and 2000 are considered Millennials, and they seem to have developed specific characteristics – from the way they live with parents, to structured lives, to contact with diverse people, to the way they want their work life to be.

Important work characteristics of this emerging group include working with diverse people, openly sharing information on web, working as a team, making colleagues their friends, integrating their work and personal life and expecting feedback.

A study by Intelligence Group on Millennials has concluded that:

  • 64% of millennial give priority to making the world a better place over anything else
  • 72% would like to be their own boss. However, if that this not possible, 79% would like their boss to be more of a mentor
  • 74% want flexible schedules
  • 88% prefer a collaborative work culture
  • 88% will not settle for anything but viable work-life integration.

Jamie Gutfreund, chief strategy officer for the Intelligence Group says that – A full 86 million Millennials will be in the US workplace by 2020—representing a full 40% of the total working population.

millennialsThe one factor that Millennials need from their career isn’t leadership opportunities, security or status anymore, but a life that extends beyond work, as well. Earlier, it was assumed that work-life balance is their primary objective. However, recent studies reveal that it is more about work-life integration.Among other things, work-life integration means one has the freedom to pursue matters related to one’s personal/family life even while at work; by the same coin, work does no longer end when one leaves the office, but may continue at home.

This kind of holistic integration of two essential life functions that were in previous times vehemently defended as separate is now given a lot of importance by Millennials. Most managerial executives from the previous generation would simply laugh at phrases like work-life integration and wonder if such a concept can exist in reality. They would never gather the courage to ask about the company’s views on such matters at an interview.

Millennials they have spent their life till now being ‘plugged in’: at home, school and at work. It is therefore not surprising that they do not accept the concerns of their personal lives to be put aside when they enter the office each morning.

As technical innovations are booming and affecting the job market, Millennials job expectations have also evolved. For them, work is about more than mere monetary gain, and is actually representative of what they are and what they want to be.

Today’s Millennials expect work organizations to state the benefits that they would avail from working at their organization. The compensation packages seem to be less important nowadays, and are more or less considered as threshold offerings (the bare minimum that Millennials expect a company to offer).

A prospective employer needs to offer it all – transparency, flexibility, good job characteristics, after-work benefits, diversity, collaboration, innovation, advancement opportunities, good reputation and scope for healthy work-life integration, in addition to salary .

“NextGen: A Global Generational Study,” a report from PwC, the University of Southern California, and the London Business School found that Baby Boomers and Generation X care more about money, while millennials are surprisingly willing to take a pay cut and be promoted at a slower pace if it means working at their dream company, especially one with a social purpose.

Similar sentiments were found by a recent Intelligence Group study conducted in North America, 64 percent of Millennials said they would rather make $40,000 a year at a job they love than $100,000 a year at a job they think is boring.

It seems that the most important aspect that keeps Millennials enthusiastic about their professional lives is the perception that they are working collectively for something better… something that will make a difference.

What do you think about changes that will happen to the workplace as more Millennials enter the active workforce ?

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