Have Millennials Lost Faith in Business? (New Report)

Photo by    William Stitt

Photo by William Stitt

The answer to that question should concern every business professional yet provide a bit of hope at the same time.

You see, the Millennial generation is now the largest in the U.S. workforce.

How large, you ask?

Well, as of 2017 – the most recent year for which U.S. Census data are available – 56 million Millennials (those ages 21 to 36 in 2017) were working or looking for work. And that number was significantly ahead of the 41 million Baby Boomers.

Which brings us to Deloitte’s 2018 Millennial Survey Report and some unsettling key findings for businesses.

Namely, that Millennials opinions about business’ motivations and ethics are trending downward. As the authors of the report write, “There continues to be a stark mismatch between what Millennials believe responsible businesses should achieve and what they perceive businesses’ actual priorities to be.”

Now this should have your attention if you want to attract and hire talent for your business. Because if your company is not aligned with Millennial values in terms of purpose, culture and integrity, you will be challenged to hire the best and the brightest. “Loyalty must be earned and the vast majority of Millennials are prepared to move, and move quickly, for a better workplace experience,” add the authors.

How is that loyalty earned?

Two important ways to accomplish that, according to the report, are through diversity and flexibility. Good pay and positive cultures are most likely to attract Millennials but diversity/inclusion and flexibility are important keys to keeping them happy.  And it is something we heard consistently from the 11 thought leaders we interviewed for our book, “Putting Soul Into Business: Why the Benefit Corporation is Transforming American Business for Good.

If there is a single key takeaway from the Deloitte Executive Summary, it is this: Young workers want business leaders to be proactive about making a positive impact in society—and to be responsive to employees’ needs

As we see it, Millennials’ faith in business is not completely lost yet. They are attracted to the Triple P Bottom Line movement of People, Planet and Profit.  But if your company is not reflecting these values and addressing the needs of these stakeholders, the timing is right to do so.

To read Deloitte’s entire report, go here.


Tom Hering