The sad reality is that most of us spend our week at work and when you factor in commuting as well, it leaves very little time to do other things that are important to us. Therefore, with such a large amount of time committed to work it should come as no surprise that Millennials want to make sure that their time is spent doing something meaningful. This is why 100% of Millennials in the Millennial Mindset survey said they wanted the company they worked for to stand for something that was more than just making money.
I can relate with this sentiment, as I strongly believe that most people want to do good and not just do well. No longer is the idea of just going to work to earn money good enough anymore, especially amongst the most talented Millennial employees who have options as to where they work. Added to this the ability to search for jobs and even for jobs to find you via the internet with websites such as LinkedIn and the brilliant Talent Rocket, means it is easier than ever for the most talented employees to find companies that stand for something that aligns with their own values.
“No longer is the idea of just going to work to earn money good enough anymore, especially
amongst the most talented employees who have options as to where they work”
This view has also been backed up by Deloitte when they undertook a survey with over 1,000 Millennials and found that most of them wanted a career that actually matters. Another interesting point to note in their survey was that “more than half of them [Millennials] believe that in the future, business will have a greater impact than anyone else in solving society’s biggest challenges. And 86% of them believe business will have at least as much potential as government to meet society’s challenges.” This demonstrates that Millennials very much support the notion of profit making businesses but also realise making money and having a positive social impact can go hand-in-hand, which is why new business models are gaining real traction.
And these new approaches to business look set to grow even further as more business leaders overcome the perception that businesses that stand for something purposeful have to be charities or non-for-profits. In fact, the data suggests that many Millennials believe that making profit is a good thing, so long as how that profit is made is not the sole purpose for a businesses’ existence and nor is it to the detriment of others. A good example of this is Unilever who own some of the world’s biggest consumer goods such as Marmite and Dove, who set themselves a goal in 2010 to double the size of their business, whilst reducing their environmental footprint and increasing their positive social impact by 2020. To put this in perspective, Unilever are on target to achieve this, with them having an annual turnover of €48.4 billion in 2014, clearly demonstrating even the biggest corporate giants can pursue profit yet still stand for something meaningful.
“Data suggests that many Millennials believe that making profit is a good thing,
so long as how that profit is made is not the sole purpose for a
businesses’ existence and nor is it to the detriment of others”
Millennials want to work for companies that stand for something and have a purpose, as they see business as being an integral part to making positive changes in the world. Making Profit with a Purpose is so important for any modern business to consider when looking at how they should operate in future. This includes making business decisions that take into account People, Planet and Profit equally, to ensure no new initiative can go ahead if one of the three elements is adversely affected in pursuit of the others. In an environment where Millennials know there are limited resources and can see the potential business have of fixing some of the world’s problems, only the businesses that make Profit With A Purpose will succeed by being able to attract and retain the best Millennial talent to work for them.