Millennials now make up the largest generation in the workforce, and Fierce Inc., a leadership and communication training company based in Seattle, predicts this generation and its attitudes about work will change the workplace in 2016. The increase of digital natives in the workplace, the growth of the sharing economy, and the rise of entrepreneurship are cited as factors of change in the traditional workplace.
“One of the biggest changes we will see in the coming year is employees’ motivation behind taking a new position. No longer will salary and perks be the primary determining factor,” Susan Scott, founder and CEO of Fierce Inc., said in a statement. “While they will still be influential, individuals are looking for a career that gives them a sense of purpose with a company that has a mission that aligns with their personal values.”
There’s plenty of focus on the millennial worker, and Fierce shared what it predicts will be the top trends for 2016, including how the youngest professional generation seeks and finds satisfaction in the workplace.
1. Job candidates will be motivated by purpose and not money.
Many modern workers are choosing jobs based on values and how the upper management portrays the company’s values. Fierce reported that a company’s values and purpose will become more important in the decision to accept a new position. When the Pew Research Center asked what Americans find important, just 18 percent said a high-paying job was extremely important to them, while 43 percent said a job they enjoy was of premier importance. CEOs that effectively and accurately represent company values and purpose will factor heavily on a potential employee’s decision to accept a job.
2. The sharing economy will inspire job-sharing programs.
Employees continue to expect a degree of flexibility when it comes to where and when they work. Fierce predicts that innovative job-sharing programs will draw principles from the sharing economy and employees will work as a team to fill one full-time position. The reciprocal flexibility and willingness of employers is essential to make this happen.
3. Real-time analytics will be applied to the workplace.
Fierce predicts that employees will have the ability to track performance data through real-time analytics programs to gain a better understanding of where they dedicate time and energy and how those choices impact work performance. The idea is that employees equipped with this knowledge can self adjust. This type of anonymity and empowerment at the employee level frees middle and upper management to focus on high-level business tasks.
4. Workplace generations will require a shift in management styles.
2016 will see four generations in the workplace, from Baby Boomers to Generation Z. This diverse workforce requires flexibility in work and management styles. To be effective, managers will need to adapt on the fly to encourage and foster collaboration across the generations. Since each generation has its own strengths and weaknesses, successful managers will be able to recognize and integrate those aspects for the greater good.
5. Employees will think like entrepreneurs.
Those entering the workforce have grown up with the glamorization of the startup community. They understand the impact of being “Instafamous,” what it can mean to be a YouTube star, and they are hungry for their own success and notoriety. Fierce predicts that companies with internal idea-incubation and entrepreneurial programs will be able to attract and keep young, innovative employees.