Young professionals: our scepticism is a wake-up call for business

Young professional working at desk
By Lesley Stewart, CA Today

17 May 2018

Results from the annual Deloitte Millennial Survey reveal young workers have lost their trust in business.

With a sense of purpose winning over profit, the majority of young professionals find working culture and a positive impact on society are more important workplace drivers than financial gain.

The Deloitte survey asked more than 10,455 millennials from 36 countries, and almost 1,850 Gen Z participants from the UK, US, Australia, China, Canada and India, for their views on business.

The report highlights that next-gen leaders have lost their trust in business - and are demanding that workplace success should be measured beyond financial performance.

It should be a wake-up call to leaders everywhere.

Deloitte said that millennials and Gen Z are "sounding the alarm for businesses to step up their efforts to make a positive impact on the broader world", as today less than half of millennials believe businesses behave ethically.

The majority of survey participants want businesses to prioritise job creation, innovation, enhancing employees’ lives and careers - and making a positive impact on society and the environment - over focussing on profits, driving efficiencies and producing or selling goods and services.

Deloitte Global Chief Executive Punit Renjen attributes the changes to geopolitical, social and technological changes over the last decade. "It should be a wake-up call to leaders everywhere," he said.

“Businesses need to identify ways in which they can positively impact the communities they work in and focus on issues like diversity, inclusion and flexibility if they want to earn the trust and loyalty of millennial and Gen Z workers.”

As a result of their lack of trust 43% of millennials expect to leave their jobs within two years, while 72% expect to be gone within five years.

How to find your career purpose

We spoke to Jan Bowen-Nielsen, career coach and founder of Quiver Management, about setting career goals that bring us closer to our purpose. "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.

“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.”

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

About Quiver Management

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. If you liked this article, why not check out the Essential Five Steps to Success?

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