Deloitte: what are young leaders prioritising over profit?

Young professional working at desk
By Lesley Stewart, CA Today

24 May 2017

According to the annual Deloitte Millennial Survey, purpose wins over profit for next-gen leaders. Lesley Stewart talks to careers expert Jan Bowen-Nielsen on how to create a career with conviction. 

The results of the Deloitte sixth annual Millennial Survey reveal that the majority of young professionals find purpose and positive culture are more important drivers than financial success.

“Life in the 21st Century is not a linear predictable process, and there are so many factors that will influence how your career unfolds,” says Jan Bowen-Nielsen, career coach and founder of Quiver Management, discussing career goals.

“It is important to have some clear long-term goals and objectives, but you need to be flexible and be ready to adjust your plans and to grab unexpected opportunities. Have alternatives and options.”

The survey asked asked tomorrow's leaders what they think of leadership today, how businesses operate, the impact on wider society and which individual characteristics define effective leaders.

Turbulent political times, economic instability, and world conflict last year had a significant impact on young professionals in the accountancy sector, and results of the survey show that "...when looking at their career goals, today’s millennials are just as interested in how a business develops its people and its contribution to society as they are in its products and profits,” said Barry Salzberg, CEO of Deloitte Global.

Find your passion + find your purpose

Jan believes in order to achieve success it’s important to have goals and a career strategy, but stresses that to find purpose your professional life you should first find your passion.

“A good career coach will start not with the role, but rather what you enjoy doing, what you are passionate about, and what you regard as success. Out of this will come a number of possible roles and routes that can meet these,” Jan explains.

“With clarity around the long-term aspirations and some of the key milestones, the focus should shift towards the near-term.

“What do you need to learn, experience and demonstrate to make you ready and eligible for the next career step?”

Finding purpose is intrinsically linked to reviewing your progress and taking action. Jan said: “As the plan and life unfolds, consider corrective action if it is not going as expected. And yes, sometimes the ultimate career goals can change as you develop and gain more experience.”

In the next part of our Quiver Inspiring Careers Series, Jan gives his top tips for newly qualified CAs and young professionals looking to create their career strategy. If you liked this article, why not check out the Essential Five Steps to Success?

About Jan Bowen-Nielsen

Jan Bowen-Nielsen is founder and director of Quiver Management, a team of qualified and highly experienced coaches and leadership development specialists.  Get in touch with Jan to find out how his team of coaches may be able to help you.


  • Leadership and management

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