Predicting the future can be risky business, and we’ve been burnt before. The year 2015 came and went and much to public dismay – we’re not all getting around on hoverboards like Marty Mcfly.
It’s not hard to see things are rapidly changing. We’ve now got autonomous vehicles to look forward too, and 3D printing is being used to create everything from conduit body parts to entire houses. If that’s not enough, the robots are coming … in fact they’re here. From robotic lettuce farmers to burger flippers aptly named ‘flippy’, technology is infiltrating our workforce and might even be doing our jobs better.
What does this mean for us and what does the future of work look like?
As technology continues to develop and various trends, demographic shifts, and other factors create change, it’s things like ‘workforce saturation’ that will determine how we work in the immediate future.
It might be hard to believe, but it’s those ‘avocado toast’ loving Millennials who are playing an important role in shaping the future of work. If you were born between the early 80’s and late 90’s – that’s you!
In a recent study it was discovered, ‘Millennials will comprise more than one of three adults by 2020 and 75 percent of the workforce by 2025.’ “The distinctive and widely shared attitudes and beliefs of this generation will slowly, but surely, reshape corporations in its image and end the confrontational and bottom-line oriented world that Boomers and Gen-Xers have created,” noted the report authors, Morley Winograd and Michael Hais.
So what are these mindsets that are shaking up the workforce as we know it?
Millennials may be the most studied generation in history. Research shows they put an emphasis on corporate social responsibility, have a great reverence for the environment, place higher worth on acquiring experiences than material things, and are adept at building communities around shared interests.
With a greater reverence for the environment, the future is looking better for ethics and sustainability. A recent study concluded that nine out of 10 Millennials would switch brands to support a particular cause and 87 percent would purchase a product with a social or environmental benefit.
Millennials also value flexibility and technology. According to Forbes, the average worker currently stays in a job for 4.4 years, a number that has been steadily declining for decades. For Millennials and Generation Z workers, the number is even lower, with 90% of young workers reporting they plan to stay in their current job less than 2 years!
Twenty years ago, the goal was to get the job, then work your way up ‘Madmen’ style to the office on the 30th floor. As workers redefine the goal line from the corner office to autonomy and work-life balance, you can bet the landscape of the office will drastically change. With more people placing value on flexibility and working remotely, the need for an agile workforce is set to rise. This is where coworking will play a huge role in providing independence, choice and meaning – redefining the face of the workplace overall.
As we move into the brave new world of millennial workplace domination it’s good to know that:
1. Millennials aren’t about the paycheck – they want a purpose.
Work must have meaning, they want to align with organisations that have a mission and a purpose. Although compensation is important and must be fair, it isn’t the main driver. Sustainable Valley coworking in Byron Bay has immersion programs to help mentor businesses and individuals in developing purposeful strategies and personal direction.
2. Millennials place greater value on development over job perks.
Most millennials don’t care as much about the fancy perks of the job, its purpose and development that drive this generation. Sustainability and ethics are of high importance, which means transparency is essential. At Sustainable Valley we believe sustainability is a philosophy that applies to every part of life – the way you work, your relationships, your career and the way we treat the environment.
3. Millennials don’t want bosses – they want coaches.
Millennials care about having managers who can coach them, who value them as both people and employees, and who help them understand and build their strengths. If you want to take your business to the next level, why not look at bringing in a business coach. At Sustainable Valley we have an in house Mind and Body coach who regularly takes time out to teach strength based mindfulness techniques to our coworkers.
4. Millennials don’t want annual reviews – they want ongoing conversations.
How do millennials communicate? Texting, tweeting, instagramming – it is instantaneous and continuous. They are in the habit of receiving constant communication and feedback, making annual reviews redundant. Look at building an open approach to collaboration, at Sustainable Valley we find this provides a culture of mutual feedback and ongoing conversations that benefit the quality of our work.
5. Millennials don’t want to fix their weaknesses – they want to develop their strengths.
Transition to a strength based culture. Organisations shouldn’t ignore weaknesses. Instead, they should minimise weaknesses and maximise strengths. Look at bringing someone in house that can provide strength based mentoring. Sustainable Valley Byron Bay offer one on one business strategy and strength based personal coaching to our coworkers.
The future is definitely looking bright, and hopefully we can still look forward to hoverboards coming soon. Who knows what else might be in store if we focus on providing quality work places for our millennials that value flexibility, sustainability, strength based coaching and approachable collaborative environments.