It is thought by many employers that the way millennials tend to “job-hop” is dangerous and risky for their companies and the futures of these millennials. HR departments and talent recruiters tend to look for employees who don’t shift through jobs fast, not wanting to invest in training if the millennial will only stay for another year or two. Perhaps we aren’t simply flighty. Perhaps there are factors about the work we do which are simply different from the majority of the previous generations.
In the article “Job Hopping is the New Normal For Millennials”, Forbes Magazine urges employers to see the upside to those who choose to acquire a variety of skills throughout different workplaces. This is the kind of behavior that I’ve always thought of as an “out-of-the-box career building” model. The importance of being engaged and happy with what you do is on the rise. Baby-boomers were set on achieving stability in their work lives and building careers which had longevity. This did not necessarily mean that they were always happy in these positions. Millennials, on the other hand, have a range of different factors that they like to have in the workplace which are mostly aimed at maintaining a high level of happiness doing what they are doing.
According to a survey compiled in 2012 by Net Impact (PDF), millennials and college students have a higher level of desire for their jobs to have a positive impact in the world around them than the past couple of generations. Over half of the respondents said that they would be willing to take a 15% pay cut to work for an organization that shared their values. Having a positive work environment, work and personal life balance, growth opportunities, and security are the top desired attributes wanted in the workplace by millennials.
Personally, the thing which I turn to when I think about my future in the work force is this: “If I am not continuing to grow with and be stimulated by what I do then what’s the point?”
Monotonous day-in-day-out work is not my goal, and I care much more about that, than the amount that I get paid. The thing is, that sometimes it takes a year or two to go through that learning curve of a new job where things are still exciting and new. After that point if you don’t have a large enough level of interest in the things you’re doing, or passion for the job and its goals, then why wait for a promotion?
Furthermore studies have shown that the higher the amount of enjoyment a person has in what they do, the more efficient they will be in their work. If millennials are searching for jobs that make them happy and fulfilled then they will also be highly efficient in the workplace where they end up landing. Not to mention that they will have also acquired a range of diverse skills while “job-hopping” which will add to their job performance and variety of expertise.
This “out of the box” creation of past work experience is scary. Notice that Net Impact’s survey lists one of the highest goals for millennials with their work is also job security. I don’t particularly like the prospect of jumping from job to job every couple of years in search for the right fit, but I am driven to do this. I have this fear of ending up in a job that I could go through an entire week without the rush that comes after the flip-flop in my tummy of a learning experience. The more I learn in my job, the more I’m stimulated, and the more I’m stimulated, the less I want to leave.
I’m looking forward to having a future in my career where I am excited to go to work, and I grow with my career. I know that this is possible in New Brunswick and I have personally experienced it in my career so far. There is so much room to grow, and the environment is supportive and energetic. I want that to continue because I love New Brunswick and I am motivated to stay here.