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Millennials Reinforce Generosity In and Out of the Workplace

During the last three weeks, I’ve talked to you about how Millennials are influencing our workplace culture. A Forbes article by Dan Schawbel inspired me to choose four themes for this series, and today I’m closing on an altruistic note.

A study by Deloitte found that 92% of Millennials believe businesses should be evaluated by more than profit and should focus on a societal purpose, which are applications of corporate social responsibility. As a group, Millennials are demanding a climate of generosity and community support from their employers. Schawbel aptly adds, “This trait will end up benefiting the image of corporations and force them to have a ‘why’ instead of just a ‘how’, as Simon Sinek would say.”

Giving and cause-related spending

Millennials are not only challenging their employers to look outside the company and into the community, they’re leading by example with their own wallets. An impressive 83% of Millennials gave to charities in 2012 according to Deloitte (up from 75% in 2011). And when they’re not giving, Millennials are spending with an eye on why. Millennials account for $1 trillion in U.S. consumer spending and 91% would switch brands to one associated with a cause through corporate social responsibility.

Purpose over profit

As an employer, do you know your why? In other words, what is the purpose, cause or belief that inspires you and your company to do what you do? Knowing and sharing this answer with your organization not only inspires your people, it increases a sense of fulfillment. I believe this level of engagement creates loyalty and an identity of purpose that drives people to accomplish even greater achievements.

The reality is that every one of the themes I’ve explored with you in this series is rooted in altruism. Every great culture is built on awareness of others and the well-being of your team. Put an eye on “the why” at your organization, and when you find the answer, share it with everyone. Your employees will reciprocate with invigorated performance and best of all, a renewed sense of loyalty.

Continue the series with Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3

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