Millennials in the Workplace: What Do They Really Want?

Frank LambertiExecutive Vice President, Distributor and Customer Experience

If you’re noticing a shift in company culture, thank a millennial. To meet this generation’s needs, savvy companies are rethinking their value propositions.

According to a report from Ernst & Young Global Ltd., millennials — adults born between 1980 and 1996 — will comprise about three-quarters of the global workforce by 2025. In the United States, they are now the largest living generation, eclipsing even the baby boomers (born 1946 to 1964), Pew Research reports.

So, what type of work environment are these enterprising adults looking for? Here are a few things to consider:

A Deeper Sense of Purpose

Helping people find a broader purpose in their work is part of building a high-trust culture. A recent international survey spanning 24 countries including Americans found that 67 percent have dreams of becoming an entrepreneur. And across the globe, the top reason for wanting to start a business was found to be following a passion (64 percent).

Millennials especially want to feel proud of their work and know it serves the greater good. That’s why so many millennials choose companies that focus on innovation, which fosters a deeper sense of purpose for this age group.

An Entrepreneurial Spirit

The millennials’ general focus on upward mobility stems from their entrepreneurial spirit. They want to advance in their chosen company, so they can start one of their own. They crave the responsibility, the limitless possibilities, and the creative process entrepreneurship provides.

Millennials are looking for a culture of entrepreneurship and innovation. They want to have their voice heard, contributing ideas for projects that can make a difference.

Flexibility and a Collaborative Culture

Millennials don’t want to be chained to a desk Monday through Friday, nine-to-five. They want flexible schedules and the option to work from home. They want to collaborate and bounce around ideas with a team, rather than toil in silence. They prefer using laptops over desktops, so they can work in a shared workspace, in the company kitchen or, occasionally, at their desk.

Ultimately, millennials seek work-life balance and flexibility. Both of these benefits lead to enhanced productivity and happiness.

A Culture of Trust

Great Place to Work researched Best Workplaces for Millennials and found that foosball tables and bring-your-dog-to-work days weren’t as important as one core value: trust.

Superficial changes won’t work unless managers make meaningful connections with millennials. Millennials are more engaged and productive in an environment defined by trusting relationships.

Because of sheer number alone, millennials are not to be ignored.

At Herbalife Nutrition, millennial distributors are thriving in our business, and we want to continue supporting their entrepreneurial spirit. By offering an opportunity to work on a part- or full-time basis, we are empowering this generation and the next to make a difference in their communities, one person at a time.