Every decade a new generation of entry level and early career employees arrive to leave their mark on how the job market evolves; in 2012 it is Gen Y – 18 to 29 year olds with a new attitude.
Here are some interesting facts about this collection of young men and women who will soon be our future business and social leaders.
According to PayScale and Gen Y research firm Millennial Branding 47% of Gen Y’s work for companies with less than 100 employees, while another 30% work for companies with less than 1500 employees. As for Gen Y who desire to work for mega large companies the preference is to work for companies known for innovation and leaders in technology like Google, Amazon and Qualcomm etc.
My feeling is what’s happened in the economy the past 5 years; the inability of well established companies to create quality jobs and their lack of loyalty in the workplace has created this trend to avoid working for the larger companies.
Where in the past the ‘American Dream’ was to start at the bottom rung on the ladder and slowly climb your way up, or when possible do so on the ‘fast-track, today there is a changing dynamic of replacing ladders with lattices. You can find out more about this from my previous post a href=”http://www.careerrocketeer.com/2012/07/the-career-lattice-is-replacing-the-career-ladder.html%29″>The Career Lattice is replacing the Career Ladder.
In terms of Gen Y preferences, researchers found the appeal is flexibility, a chance to be entrepreneurial, and the freedom to use social networks in the workplace without strict corporate guidelines.
In this global age when business can be easily conducted remotely, flexibility is quite important. The ability to get your work done outside of a strict 9-5 schedule and work from home some, most or all of the time is not only appealing, in many jobs it is crucial. With technology we can now attend meetings and collaborate with people on the opposite coast and across the pond on our laptops at home. So Gen Y workers see little value in being at the office at 5 am in the morning or at 11 pm to attend a meeting or speak with a co-worker in Paris or Tokyo about the project they are collaborating on.
Also there are many companies that allow you to work 100% remotely and this too appeals to Gen Y since it broadens the number of companies they can work for.
I think because of the lack of job creation today Gen Y also sees opportunities that allow them to develop their entrepreneurial skills a big plus because this way they can create companies and jobs a few years down the road rather than look for new positions or be among the long-term unemployed.
Wanting the freedom to use social media shows me how important social media such as Linked-In, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Google+ etc. has become today, and how much it will grow in importance in the next 10 years. This generation grew up in the age of social media and older workers must learn from them how to embrace social media or get left behind.
On the negative side many entry level Gen Y employees are having a very difficult time finding jobs in their chosen field due in part to competition from older, more seasoned unemployed and employed candidates.
As for education, most Gen Y do have a 4-year college degree and many have advanced degrees, however these diplomas no longer guarantee placement in a white collar position. This is why so many are working in jobs that are beneath them and do not require a degree at all.
The smart Gen Y are now seeking degrees in science and related majors leading to jobs in biotech, neuroscience, robotics and similar fields.
This is the mindset of the Gen Y generation, but it is also worthwhile for career hangers in their 30’s and to consider these new workplace dynamics.
Again, I am available to offer a professional critique of resumes and social media profiles and offer thoughts on how to improve them. Just send it along to firstname.lastname@example.org. No cost/no obligation.