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What millennials want from work

There are now more millennials in the workforce than baby boomers, but, guess what? They don’t view the job market the way boomers or even Gen Xers do. In fact, they behave more like consumers shopping for the best product.

A new Gallup poll found that 71 percent of millennials are either not engaged or are actively disengaged at work. This, of course, makes it tough for employers to hold on to them, because engagement is essential to retention.

How bad is it? Well, according to Gallup, 47 percent of actively disengaged millennials strongly agree that they will switch jobs if the job market improves in the next 12 months, compared with just 17 percent of engaged millennials.

Millennials, said the study, “are consumers of the workplace. They shop around for the jobs that best align with their needs and life goals.”

What does this all really mean for employers?

Most crucially, it’s important to understand what millennials are looking for when seeking a job.

Top on that list is the opportunity to learn and grow, followed by the quality of both their immediate manager and company management, as well as interest in the type of work they’re doing — the commitment factor. After that they look for advancement opportunities, followed by compensation.

Pay may not be their chief motivator, but it does factor in to the equation, especially considering their student debt load.

The bottom line? If millennials don’t get those all-important opportunities, they’ll soon be looking elsewhere for their next job. And employers will be back to recruiting.

About the Author

Larry Hannappel

Larry spent 16 years with Century Casino’s and was instrumental in the start-up and growth of the company through expansions in Canada, South Africa, the Czech Republic, Poland and on several cruise ships as well as in Colorado. He was most recently the SVP, Principal Finance Officer and COO of North American operations for Century Casinos Inc., a multinational, Nasdaq-traded gaming company. Earlier in his career, Larry worked at the Johns Manville Corp. Larry spent 13 years in various accounting and finance functions in the company’s fiberglass manufacturing division and was key in the start-up of a molding plant in Indiana. Larry and his wife Kathy and three children live in Colorado. He enjoys four-wheeling, motorcycling, golfing, skiing and brewing beer.

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