There are 5 generations active in the workplace and team members now want more from work than a wage. Many companies are looking to reconfigure the notion of the workplace. This goes way beyond tearing down cubicle walls, updating furniture and introducing ping-pong tables and beanbags. So cliché.
Team members crave: a sense of belonging and purpose, to be led and to feel valued.
In a global survey of 26,000 LinkedIn members, the survey found that the sense of purpose deepened the further along people were in their career. 48% of baby boomers (aged 51+) reported that they prioritised purpose over pay and titles, Generation X (aged 36-51) came in at 38% and Millennials just 30%.
Some people can understand how it would be easy to stereotype 76 million millenials, as Simon Sinek did when he stated Millenials could be generalised as having:
- Lower self-esteem and being highly self-absorbed, narcissist, and entitled
- Social media addictions
- Imbalanced relationships
- A lack of patience and job hopping.
Age and experience play crucial roles in establishing an individual’s view on purpose. Research by Erik Erikson found that young adults tend to focus foremost on establishing an income and home, seeking out a life partner and potentially starting a family. As people age, they start to think more about their contribution to society. This psychological shift leads them to increasingly prioritise purpose more.
Companies and all employees could both benefit from collectively creating a meaningful work culture where a sense of purpose is defined.
Employees who feel like their work creates positive impact are more likely to feel fulfilled, promote their company and stay in the job longer. Studies have shown that inspired employees are almost three times more productive than dissatisfied employees. Imagine what you could do if you could triple your current workforce with inspiration, rather than more hiring!
There are trends and tendencies across all generations. The same survey later revealed 74% of candidates wanted a job where they felt like their work mattered.
If you truly want to create a sense of purpose in your company; get to know team members as individuals. The benefits will follow.