According to population projections from the U.S. Census Bureau, Millennials are well on their way to supplanting Baby Boomers as America’s largest living adult generation by the year 2019. However, it was back in 2016 that Millennials, whom the Pew Research Center has defined as anyone who was between the ages of 20 and 35 in that year, officially overtook both Baby Boomers and Generation Xers as the largest generation in the U.S. labor force. Because millennials have become such a major component of the workforce in our labor market, it behooves employers to start trying to understand the age group.
Many organizations are finding it difficult to not only attract millennials to their ranks, but also to keep them there. The prevailing narrative behind this is that millennials are entitled and self-involved thanks to being raised by overprotective parents and social media. We’ve all most likely heard the stereotypes. “Millennials are job hoppers ready to quit at the drop of a hat and move on to the next opportunity as soon as their current job doesn’t live up to all their expectations.” But this stereotype largely doesn’t hold up when put to scrutiny.
The truth is that more and more employees in general want to work for a company that they feel shares their values. Therefore, if businesses want to stand out from their competitors and attract new talent, it’s up to the executives of these businesses to establish a workplace culture that inspires employees with a sense of purpose that goes beyond making a profit. This is the way to ensure a staff that is motivated and enthusiastic about doing their job and putting their all into their work.
Millennials lived through the economic downturn of the Great Recession. Many of them have been saddled with the burden of thousands of dollars of student debt. Most want the stability and financial security that comes with a long-term career just as much as their older generational counterparts. Like anyone else, they also want to feel valued.
One thing true of many Millennials is that they put greater emphasis on having a good work-life balance. They’ve seen the people around them have to spend countless hours on the job, or sometimes multiple jobs, and barely have time to enjoy life. That is why it is all the more important for them to feel fulfilled by what they do in their careers. The workplace helps foster this feeling when it possesses a culture that rewards their contribution, their creativity, and collaboration with their coworkers.