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Things that Millennials Expect from Their Jobs Millennials are consumers of a work environment as they shop jobs that best align their life and career goals

By Dr. Shameem S

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"Millennials want to work for organizations that prioritize purpose as well as profit. It's as simple as that"

Punit Renjen

Millennials (Gen Y) – Born between 1980 and 2000 -the most recent generation to enter the workforce. Neil Howe and William Strauss, author of the 1991 book Generations: The History of America's Future, 1584 to 2069 coined the term "Millennial". They are called so as they have a close relationship with the new millennium and digital world. Millennials are generally confident, achievement-oriented, enjoy working in teams. They want perfect work-life balance, as they give emphasis on their life as well. This generation is well skilled in terms of technology usage and enjoys being tech savvy. It is high time that employers must understand this generation's expectation from the work environment. The reason being, the global workforce will comprise of 75per cent Gen Y by 2025 (Delloitte, 2014). In fact, managing millennials has become one of the key challenges faced by most of the organizations today.

They have a different outlook on what they expect from their jobs. They have higher expectations in terms of pay and seek challenges in their jobs. They want flexibility in their jobs and friendly work culture. In fact, culture is key when they consider a job. It is the overall work experience they receive in terms of work environment, creativity and morale. They are the first generation to use the word "fun" to describe their dream job. They want to enjoy their working experience in an organization. This is the reason why few companies like Google, Amazon etc, emphasize on having informal work environment.

What Exactly do they Want?

Millennials expect open, honest communication from the employer. They expect performance feedback to be given to them on a regular basis as they always want to see the results of their work faster. They will be happy to have senior leaders of the company to be mentoring them. They expect faster career growth and a learning environment. If millennials don't find an opportunity to move up the ladder in an organization, they prefer moving out. They seek knowledge and information to enhance their career growth. As they are technologically skilled, they prefer Learning Management systems or E-learning over traditional learning methods. Millennials want to control their working hours and seek flexibility at work timings. In fact, this substantiates with the argument that they expect work-life balance. At the same time, they are focused on achieving the targets and outcomes as per the scheduled time. These are the generations who seek employers to approve "work from home' option.

This generation also seeks mobility opportunities with great eagerness and enthusiastic. They view such international exposures actually help them to learn new skills and progress in their professions. According to many studies done on this generation on what they expect from their jobs, it is estimated that nearly 80per cent millennials are willing to relocate to different geography especially overseas assignments.

They Have Ideas Like No Other Generation

One other interesting fact is that most millennials have a lot of provoking ideas and they want to test their ideas. When they don't find their jobs interesting, the other option they have is to start a new company on their own to test and implement their ideas. In fact, this is why most companies the concept of "intrapreneurship" where employers encourage their employees to contribute ideas and to be innovative.

Millennials are also often criticized as job hoppers as they don't stay in a job for long and they are less loyal to the job. Instead of superficial judgments, it is important for an employer to understand why they switch job often and what can be done to make them stay in the organizations. Millennials are consumers of a work environment as they shop jobs that best align their life and career goals. It is important for the employers to brand themselves well so that the millennials can choose them over their competitors.

Dr. Shameem S

Assistant Professor of Human Resource Management and Organizational Behaviour at Great Lakes Institute of Management, Chennai


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