What Do Millennials Want From Your Workplace?

What Do Millennials Want From Your Workplace?

As a small business owner, much of your staff is probably made up of Millennial employees. That’s why it’s important to keep these workers engaged, happy and excited to be working for you. However, that may be easier said than done, according to a new report by Deloitte.

If they had the opportunity, in the next year 25 percent of Millennials would leave their current employers to get a new job or to do something different, according to The Deloitte Millennial Survey 2016. The percentage rises to 44 percent when the time frame is expanded to two years, and by the end of 2020, two out of three Millennials say they want to have moved on from their current jobs.

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This isn’t just because Millennials are young and still in entry-level positions, either. A significant number are experienced employees in their 30s. In fact, 57 percent of Millennial employees who have senior positions still say they want to leave their jobs by the end of 2020.

What do Millennials Want at Work?

How can you keep valuable Millennial employees from working with “one foot out the door” as the report phrases it?

  • Help them develop leadership skills. Millennials in the survey rate leadership as the most valuable skill/attribute an employee can have, but also believe that businesses aren’t doing enough to help them become good leaders. More than seven out of 10 Millennials who plan to leave their employers in the next two years say they’re not happy with the way their leadership skills are being developed at work. In contrast, the most loyal Millennial employees are more likely to say that their employers provide a great deal of training and support for those who want to take on leadership roles, and that even younger employees are actively encouraged to aim for leadership roles.
  • Encourage mentorship. Millennials in the survey who have experienced mentoring say it has a positive impact on their job satisfaction. Those who plan to stay with their current employers for more than five years are twice as likely to have mentors as those who are not planning to stay that long.
  • Ensure that your business makes a positive contribution to society. Nearly 90 percent of Millennials in the survey agreed with the statement, “The success of a business should be measured in terms of more than just its financial performance.” In addition, more than 80 percent of Millennials believe that business has great potential to do good. You can’t fool Millennials into thinking that your business is socially responsible just with PR, image or buzz, either. You’ll need to provide high-quality products and services, good customer service and demonstrable environmental and/or social responsibility to earn their respect.
  • Show them how they individually contribute to the positive impact that your business has on the world. Millennial employees look for jobs in which they can actively contribute to the positive impact a business has on society. Make sure all your employees understand the role their particular duties play in accomplishing the larger goal, no matter how removed their day-to-day tasks may seem from the big picture.
  • Create a supportive, inclusive working environment. The Millennial employees in the survey who are most loyal and satisfied are more likely to say they work for companies where there is open communication, a culture of mutual support and tolerance, a strong commitment to inclusiveness and the active encouragement of creativity and idea generation among all employees.
  • Help them achieve their personal goals. Millennials actually have fairly traditional personal goals: They want to enjoy work/life balance, be able to own their own homes and obtain financial security.

Millennial Photo via Shutterstock

Rieva Lesonsky Rieva Lesonsky is a Columnist for Small Business Trends covering employment, retail trends and women in business. She is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. Visit her blog, SmallBizDaily, to get the scoop on business trends and free TrendCast reports.

3 Reactions
  1. Millenials work better in low stress environments with lots of flexibility. Although stress is generally okay and they can adapt easily, they work better when it is supportive.

  2. Good article. Employers should prepare themselves since Millennials are now the LARGEST segment of the workforce. 50% of the Millennial workforce would like to leave their current organization within 2 years!

    GoGenY.com provides managers with complimentary access to Monthly Millennial Newsletter to help them attract and retain their top millennial talent. Sign-up today!

  3. If the probability that a millennial will not not honor a a job commitment of 3 years, and it takes more than a year to train them –
    why would an employer hire just a person? The answer, these days employers are choosing NOT to hire this age group because of their
    tendency to bolt. In business, the employer must be able to get a return for their investment. Why have a supportive environment,
    if they are going to leave the job anyway?

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