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  • Writer's picturePavan Khoobchandani

"Don't Call Me A Hipster" - How To Harness The Energy Of Millennials In the Workplace

You've probably read the headlines: Millennials are the largest generation in the American work force, trailing behind Gen Xers and Baby Boomers.

What else do you know about Millennials? That they are "spoiled," "lazy" and "entitled," or that they are “self-centered and lazy” or too focused on their devices?

Well, if you want to harness the power of your Millennial employees, think again.

The Case Foundation has been studying how the Millennial generation (born 1980 – 2000) gives to and engages with causes and social issues for ten years. It's 2019 report, “The Millennial Impact Report: 10 Years Looking Back” demonstrates why and how this generation has engaged in doing good, how they have changed philanthropy, what they expect of the public, private, nonprofit and government sectors in addressing societal challenges and the consequences for ignoring their powerful influence. 

What does this mean for employers? Companies need to think very closely about health care, about giving programs, about your company's values, and about what motivates millennials to take and keep jobs. Hint: it's not casual Friday or free bagels.

Some take aways from the report:

  • More than 80 million Millennials worldwide represent a collective $170 billion in purchase power.

  • Millennials want to create a positive impact on their community and the world through their work.

  • Millennials will make up roughly 50% of the US workforce in 2020 and 75% of the global workforce by 2030.

Perhaps most importantly to employers, the report states that:

The act of doing good as part of your everyday life is, according to some, the legacy of the Millennial generation. These everyday actions may seem small; however, there are moments when collective, small-scale actions can become a powerful movement.

It only stands to reason that Millennials will examine their workplaces to ensure that its values match with their own. With the unemployment rate in July 2019 at 3.7%, we're even seeing new employees not showing up for their first day of work because they have another job. Employers are not in the driver's seat here; they need to create value for their employees outside of a paycheck. Either that, or be left behind.


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