2015 Millennial Survey gives insight to inform leadership and talent agendas

2015 Millennial Survey

Understanding how Millennials perceive businesses and what they expect from them is critical to engaging and attracting this workforce of the future. More than 7,800 Millennials in 29 global emerging and developed markets contributed their views to Deloitte’s fourth annual Millennial Survey. Their responses reveal a mix of positive and negative perceptions about business, with this overarching message: Business needs to reset its purpose to attract Millennials.

The survey results suggest businesses, particularly in developed markets, need to make significant changes to attract and retain the future workforce. On the plus side: 73 percent of Millennials surveyed believe that businesses are having a positive impact. This was especially true in the emerging markets of Indonesia (98 percent), Philippines (91 percent), India (90 percent), China (89 percent), and Mexico (89 percent). However, the highest number of respondents reporting a negative business impact on society came from developed markets: Germany (66 percent), Belgium (59 percent), France (56 percent), Japan (55 percent), and Italy (44 percent).

Also on the plus side, 61 percent of respondents believe many businesses take a strong leadership position on issues that impact wider society—showing even stronger leadership on important social issues than governments. However, an overwhelming 75 percent of those surveyed also question businesses’ motivation, believing many focus on their own agendas rather than helping to improve society. Instead, respondents believe business should focus on people and purpose, not just products and profits.

“The message is clear: When looking at their career goals, today’s Millennials are just as interested in how a business develops its people and how it contributes to society as they are in its products and profits,” said Barry Salzberg, CEO of Deloitte Global. “These findings should be viewed as a wake-up call to the business community, particularly in developed markets, that they need to change the way they engage Millennial talent or risk being left behind.”

Only 28 percent of Millennials feel their current organization is making full use of their skills. More than half (53 percent) aspire to become the leader or most senior executive within their current organization, with a clear ambition gap between Millennials in emerging markets and developed markets. Sixty-five percent of emerging-market-based Millennials said they would like to achieve this goal, compared to only 38 percent in developed markets. This figure was also higher among men.

Additionally, the survey found large global businesses have less appeal for Millennials in developed markets (35 percent) compared to emerging markets (51 percent). Developed-market-based Millennials are also less inclined (11 percent) than Millennials in emerging markets (22 percent) to start their own business.

Other notable findings from the survey include:

  • Millennials want to work for organizations with purpose. For six in 10 Millennials, a “sense of purpose,” is part of the reason they chose to work for their current employers.
  • Technology, media, and telecommunications (TMT) are the most attractive employers. TMT ranked most desirable sector and the one to provide the most valuable skills according to Millennials. Men (24 percent) were nearly twice as likely as women (13 percent) to rank TMT as the number one sector to work in. Google and Apple top the list of businesses that most resonated with Millennials as leaders, each selected by 11 percent of respondents.
  • Confidence Gap? Millennial men more likely to pursue leadership. Millennial men were somewhat more likely to say they would like to secure the “top job” within their organization than women (59 percent vs. 47 percent). Women were also less likely to rank their leadership skills at graduation as strong; 27 percent of men vs. 21 percent of women rated this skill as strong. However, when asked what they would emphasize as leaders women were more likely to say employee growth and development (34 percent compared to 30 percent), an area that many Millennials felt was lacking within their current organizations.
  • Organizations and colleges must do more to nurture emerging leaders. When asked to estimate the contributions that skills gained in higher education made to achievement of their organization’s goals, Millennials’ average figure is 37 percent.
  • The changing characteristics of leadership. Today’s Millennials place less value on visible (19 percent), well-networked (17 percent), and technically skilled (17 percent) leaders. Instead, they define true leaders as strategic thinkers (39 percent), inspirational (37 percent), personable (34 percent) and visionary (31 percent).

“Millennials want more from business than might have been the case 50, 20, or even 10 years ago,” said Salzberg. “They are sending a very strong signal to the world’s leaders that when doing business, they should do so with purpose. The pursuit of this different and better way of operating in the 21st century begins by redefining leadership.”

To access the full report and explore infographics about the survey, please visit: www.deloitte.com/millennialsurvey.


As used in this document, “Deloitte” means Deloitte Consulting LLP, a subsidiary of Deloitte LLP. Please see www.deloitte.com/us/about for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries. Certain services may not be available to attest clients under the rules and regulations of public accounting.

Talent Strategies for the Multi-Gen Workforce

Talent Strategies for the Multi-Gen WorkforcePosted by Dr. Michael Gelles on December 11, 2012

With four generations — Veterans, Boomers, Generation X and Millennials — currently in the workforce, it’s not uncommon for government managers to adapt their management style to their own generation rather than fully consider how to manage a multigenerational workforce. On the contrary, all four generations are ultimately looking for the same thing in the workplace— an opportunity to serve the public interest in an engaging way, work-life balance and opportunities to develop professionally.

Continue reading “Talent Strategies for the Multi-Gen Workforce”