Deloitte just completed its fifth millennial study, this one focusing on values and ambitions, drivers of job satisfaction, and increasing presence of millennials on senior leadership teams. The study was conducted in 29 countries, consisted of more than 4,000 interviews, and involved 7,500+ millennials.

One of the most troubling findings is that many millennials essentially already have one foot out the door at their companies:


By the end of 2020, two in three respondents hope/expect to move on from their current roles and companies.

This means employers need to put plans in place to win over the next generation of leaders.

One of the standard-issue complaints about millennials is that they are supposedly “entitled” and that they “expect” too much from work. In fairness, every generation has “expected” something from work. There have been many intense conversations about recognition programs and their suspect ROI. It’s not necessarily about recognition. Rather, it’s about loyalty – which you should be fostering if you don’t want to lose two in every three workers every few years.

Protect your potential leadership pipeline by being mindful of the following:


Be transparent. Don’t hoard information at the top levels. Focus on the relevant training and development of your people.


That 4.6 hours a week spent “discussing new ideas” – which is part of an ideal work week for millennials – doesn’t mean “schedule more meetings.” Meetings usually don’t address new ideas – they provide status updates on existing ones. Allow time for growth and iteration. Google implemented this philosophy with its famous “20 percent time,” which led to Gmail, one of the company’s most popular services.

Suppose you run a small, 100-employee company. If you’re losing 66-70 people every few years, that’s a lot of information going out the door – and a lot of cost hits in terms of retraining and constantly pivoting to meet the skills of the people you have at any given moment. That’s no way to run a business – which is why it is important to focus on these things, even if they seem “fluffier” compared to traditional business metrics.

A version of this article previously appeared on Waggl’s blog.

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