I just finished reading a Marshall Goldsmith/Patricia Wheeler newsletter for successful leaders. I was particularly interested in Patricia Wheeler’s article on Millennials. I’d share it with you…but after 10 minutes of searching I couldn’t find it on the web. (Note to self: if I ever start an electronic newsletter, post it on my website to increase web traffic.)
Anywho, Wheeler talks about meeting with a group of Millennials about what they look for in an employer. Here’s the (paraphrased) list:
- Help develop talents and skills
- Provide challenging work
- Create career paths and opportunities for growth
- Offer work/life balance
Now call me crazy…but isn’t that what we’re all looking for?!
Don’t we all want a company that will provide training and development, offer meaningful assignments and future opportunities for success? Don’t we want to work for companies who recognize our individual talents and will help us become better at what we do? And, while they’re at it, not work us to death so we still have some energy when we get home to enjoy dinner with the family and watch a little TV?
I’m struggling to understand. Do Millennials want something different? Or do they want the same things presented in a different way? Take work/life balance for example. Are there really people who don’t want work/life balance? I’m thinking everyone wants it, but the definition might change depending on who you talk to. For example, my parents thought work/life balance meant leaving at 5 p.m. and not taking work home. For me, it means working when I need to work and playing when I want to play regardless of the particular day or hour.
With new times, new inventions, and new generations comes new ways of doing things. The challenge for companies is to build flexibility and adaptability into their corporate culture so they can attract and retain a diverse workforce.2