Insights from a millennial: millennial motivation
Following feedback from our previous blog, Insights of a Millennial Worker, we’re finding out exactly what millennials want, despite the millennial stereotype. Natalie King, Digital Content Executive, explores more on this.
If you begin to search “why do millennials” on Google, the top five automated results include “travel”, “love coffee”, “hate friends”, “feel so entitled” and “think they are special”. Ouch.
However, feedback from my previous blog post shows that many employers, HR teams and L&D teams do not believe the negative stereotypes of millennials. We are largely in agreement that millennials are just as committed as the generations before us, and our fundamental desires – such as a home, retirement savings, a career and a family – largely run parallel to our elders.
However, some research suggests that millennials require specific working conditions tailored to our needs, and I disagree.
Yes, I do expect flexibility, and a healthy work-life balance is the most important aspect to my role, but the idea of freelancing, working as a contractor or on a “gig” basis – options that are hailed as the fix to millennial fickleness – fills me with dread.
Not all millennials would suit freelance or remote working. Whilst remote working is very valuable for my role, not all millennials enjoy days alone – anything more than working two days from home has me craving workplace banter to bounce ideas around the office.
Whilst freelancing offers ultimate flexibility, it also offers less job security – and ‘despite’ being a millennial, I’m more motivated by property investment than I am travelling. Research in Deloitte’s Millennial Survey in 2017 has proven that 70% of millennials would prefer to be in full-time employment rather than freelance work – so where has this assumed preference come from?
Articles also suggest that millennials need an attractive compensation package designed specifically for them – as though not all job seekers expect an attractive compensation package. However, compensation packages that include any form of compulsory fun would not attract me. Whilst compulsory ‘beer Fridays’ may attract some workers, I’d rather flexible working arrangements and a solid pension scheme. (This said, optional socials are very welcome!)
Roles with a flexible working arrangement, a healthy salary and pension scheme, good colleagues and the opportunity to grow my career prove more desirable. I expect to be able to develop in my role, and this doesn’t mean that I am looking to leave – it is more for self-satisfaction and the ability to find my niche.
In honesty, I’d feel resentful if I were offered subsidised canteen vouchers instead of career development and opportunities to learn. I’d rather interesting and varied daily responsibilities over a plush breakout room.
Whilst I cannot speak for all millennials, the majority of ‘millennial perks’ would not apply to me. Shock horror, they might even apply to non-millennials! Rather than categorising employees by their age demographics, it would be better for managers to talk to their teams in order to categorise by individual motivations – be it property investment, travel, career goals, or avocado on toast.
…and I cannot think of anything worse than a nap pod.