To prosper over time, every company must not only deliver financial performance, but also show how it makes a contribution to society. Companies must benefit all of their stakeholders, including shareholders, employees, and the communities in which they operate.-Larry Fink, BlackRock CEO
According to Deloitte’s 2018 Millennial Survey, the perception of business is on a downwards trajectory for the first time in two years. The next generation of leaders feel there is a stark mismatch in what they believe a businesses’ priorities should be and what those businesses’ priorities actually are.
Only 48% of respondents felt that businesses were operating ethically, down from 2017’s 65%, and only 47% felt that business leaders were genuinely committed to helping improve society. Across mature economies as a whole, 67% felt that most businesses had no ambition beyond making money.
Naturally, these negative perceptions make it hard for companies to hold on to their staff. The next generation of leaders cares more about societal contributions and making a difference than ever before, so how can businesses meet in the middle?
Here are a few ways you can work on breeding loyalty in your organization:
While the millennial workforce overwhelmingly feels as though a businesses’ success should be measured on more than just financial gain, that does not mean finances are not a concern for them.
If a company determines their main goal as revenue, then employees want a piece of the pie. Create a system of rewards, chances for bonuses, and discount programs that show them how their contributions have played into a larger goal.
It all comes down to one thing: culture, culture, culture. Some interviews even include “culture fit” portions now, where interviewees speak with non-department employees to get a feel for the company outside of their scope of work.
The next generation of leaders are looking for a positive and welcoming environment where their colleagues have strong interpersonal skills. They want to connect and collaborate. Further, they want a place that inspires them work hard and better themselves.
The constant pace of change in today’s world calls for a new sense of flexibility. Millennials really value a company that can understand changing circumstances. Life happens, and they want to feel like they can share that openly.
Try implementing work from home initiatives or extended vacation policies. More importantly, make sure your employees take advantage of it too! Many employees with unlimited vacation don’t even utilize half of what a standard vacation policy would be because they don’t want to feel like they’re “taking advantage” of it.
Encourage your team to take time off – hard work = relaxing rewards.
Millennials who plan to leave their jobs within 2 years report the main reason being that they feel there are no learning or development opportunities for them at their current company. The next generation of leaders is very invested in bettering themselves, so show them that you’re invested too.
Provide ample learning opportunities by implementing a leadership development program. If that’s not in the budget, trying searching the web for free resources, webinars, or conventions that you can send them to. Commit to them, and they’ll commit to you.
Well-being & health programs
Aside from committing to professional development, commit to their personal development too. Deloitte’s study found that implementing health and wellness programs lead to an increase in employee loyalty for many organizations. This can come in the form of providing healthy lunches once a week, offering fitness reimbursements, or organizing group exercise classes as a team bonding activity.
Reputation for ethical behavior
As we mentioned above, millennials are really looking for companies that are committed to bettering their communities. More than financial gain, they want a company that has a strong mission and strong values; one that is giving back to the community for every dollar they make.
Make sure your organization has a powerful mission statement. Get involved in charity and donation initiatives. You can start an advisory board within your organization to get those who are passionate about a commitment to giving back a chance to share their voices.
Diversity and inclusion
Only 16% of the survey’s respondent felt their leadership teams were reflective of “wider society”. The workplace is growing and changing at a rapid pace, and that calls for a variety of perspectives and people at the decision-making table. When hiring and creating management teams, ensure they are reflective of society as a whole.