Today’s employees don’t want ‘a job’. They want several.
Unlike previous generations these job seekers are choosing to develop a range of skills working for a number of businesses at the same time – having a ‘Portfolio Career’. In addition, this group of workers don’t expect to make career compromises. They want each one of their jobs to be the job. The job that understands who they are, fits around their life and satisfies their career goals. All 26 of them!
A new generation of workers has arrived – a combination of Millennials, returning Mum’s and young job seekers are embracing a more open and limitless world where instability and rapid change are the norm. An ‘Always On’ environment means they are well equipped to take on several challenges at once and readily reject jobs that don’t ‘work’ for them.
Harvard Business Review qualifies, ‘Millennials are consumers of the workplace. They shop around for the jobs that best align with their needs and life goals’.
As a result, the traditional career ladder is being superseded by a much more diverse career ‘lattice’ that allows free-flowing ideas and fluid career paths. As this group freely spawns their own working world employers are being forced to rewrite their employment strategies to create jobs that are reflective of the needs of today’s employees – whether they are balancing childcare with work, paying off student debt or satisfying the desire to ‘learn and re-learn’ across many different career paths.
The ‘Empowered Workplace’ is becoming more and more popular, especially among tech-oriented companies. In empowered workplaces, many rules of conduct such the 9-5 workday, central office-based locations and separate job responsibilities are revised and relaxed to create a more flexible and creative environment. The Empowered Workforce focuses on the thinking that how the work is done is less important than the quality of the work produced.
The Goodway Group, a digital marketing agency is successfully embracing this Empowered Workplace philosophy. They have over 400 employees and every single one of them works from home. Goodway bosses believe a ‘fully remote culture’ is greatly appreciated by their staff for the sole reason that it lets them make their own choices – empowering the employee.
Larger, more traditional organisations will have a tough challenge ahead if they want to attract today’s employees to join their business. Corporates must offer more freedom, more ownership and more innovation. In essence, they need to behave like the start-ups that are snapping at their heels (and capturing the imagination of a whole generation of new talent).
Mercer’s 2017 Global Talent Trends Study shows, 93% of organisations worldwide report they are planning to redesign their structure in the next two years — yet only 4% of business executives say their organisation is “change agile.” Unsurprisingly, with widespread change being slow to take effect, more and more people are turning to self-employment. This is spurring a nation of creative entrepreneurs who are delivering billions to the economy and redefining the world of work.
notonthehightstreet.com recently commissioned a report that found these ‘self-employment businesses, many run by women, are rewriting the rule book by turning their backs on the traditional ‘9 to 5’ in favour of flexibility and an altogether more fulfilling and happier work/life blend’.
They recorded an increasing number of people finding their own way to make work ‘work’ for them. Motivated by an ‘always on’ digitally connected world and the inflexibility of traditional work models, unwilling or unable to accommodate a growing number of two-parent working families, many mums are turning to self-employment to build and start their own business.
Notonthehighstreet.com reported ‘Over the last ten years, there has been a 50% increase in the number of self-employed women, with figures now standing at 1.5 million’.
In fact, The Telegraph recently published an interesting statistic from a 2016 report by Coople. It states that ‘28% of parents would voluntarily take a cut in pay to improve their work/life balance’.
Recognising the need for more flexible working contracts and being respectful of the fact that becoming a mother often reshapes the way women view their career and relationship with their employer, AMV BBDO advertising agency have recently launched half-time roles. Specifically designed to attract female creative talent that they would otherwise lose due to parental commitments, this is may seem like a bold move, but if the concept proves successful AMV aim to roll it out across their other departments.
The workforce is changing. No longer dominated by full-time employees, tomorrow’s working world will be a harmonious blend of specialised consultants, contractors and freelancers working alongside part time and full-time employees and it appears this breed of flexible workers are the happiest ones. A recent study by McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) found that 97% of contractors are much happier than their permanently employed counterparts, reporting superior satisfaction levels in numerous aspects of work, including level of income, ability to express creativity, and opportunities for development.**
At Flintlock, we fully believe in this flexible ‘melting pot’ approach – it’s the model our business is built on. As marketing consultants we work with progressive clients purposefully embedding ourselves in the heart of their business to adopt the culture and co-create more insightful solutions. It’s proven to be an incredibly productive way of working for everyone.
So, if companies want to germinate a happy, productive and future proof workforce Flintlock believes they need to consider their working environment and ask the question, “Does this company have the flexibility and momentum to attract the most creatively agile employees and produce the most engaging output?”
Hopefully, by adopting this forward thinking approach to working, the answer will be “Yes!”
*By 2020 over a third of the global workforce will be Millennials.
**A recent study by McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) found that 97% of contractors are much happier than their permanently employed counterparts, reporting superior satisfaction levels in numerous aspects of work, including level of income, ability to express creativity, and opportunities for development.