"Younger Workers Say Show Us The Money—And They Mean Business"


Posted February 18, 2020 by Mark Perna

A new survey reveals that Gen-Z and Millennials are much bolder than their older colleagues when negotiating salary. Mark’s article, “Younger Workers Say Show Us The Money—And They Mean Business,” published at Forbes.com on February 11, 2020.

Workers of every generation prioritize salary above all else, reports a recent ManpowerGroup study. But a survey released last month by Randstad reveals that Generation-Z and Millennials are much bolder in their approach to salary negotiations than their older colleagues.

The Randstad 2020 U.S. Compensation Insights survey sheds new light on how younger workers, along with their elder counterparts, approach pay negotiations and issues with current and prospective employers. Four highlights:

  • Salary and retention: Nearly three out of four Gen-Zers (73%) and Millennials (74%) expect a pay raise every year in order to stay at their current company. Compare that to Boomers and Traditionalists (also known as the “Silent Generation”), where the number drops significantly—to 62% and 43%, respectively.
  • Salary and gender: Women may still make less money than men, but they’re becoming increasingly vocal about the inequities—especially younger women, says a recent New York Times article. Women may still make less money than men, but they’re becoming increasingly vocal about the inequities—especially younger women. Click To Tweet

    According to Randstad, a majority of all women, regardless of generation, report they’re considering leaving their job because they believe they’re underpaid. (Only 41% percent of men say the same.) Additionally, 72% of women, versus 59% of men, say they’d make a lateral move to another company just to receive a jump in salary—one they wouldn’t get if they stayed at their current company.

  • Salary and performance: Despite younger workers’ more assertive approach to pay negotiation, there’s one important thing that all generations agree on: across all ages, a significant majority would prefer that raises be given based on performance, rather than solely as increases to adjust for cost-of-living or inflation. That’s right: workers, young and old, don’t just want more money handed to them; they want to earn it.
  • Salary and negotiating tactics: Close to six out of ten Gen-Zers (58%) and Millennials (59%) say they’ve used a potential job offer as leverage to negotiate a higher salary at their current company—a number that dips appreciably with Boomers (29%) and Traditionalists (24%). Likewise, 55% of both Gen-Zers and Millennials admit they’ve told a prospective employer they had another job offer when they really didn’t—simply as a negotiating tactic. For Boomers and Traditionalists, that number falls to just 24% and 15%, respectively.

But what did we expect?

Gen-Z and Millennials were reared to believe they are special. That’s because their Boomer parents, in tune with the self-esteem movement of the 1980s and 90s, were careful to instill that value in them from a very early age. So it should come as no surprise, then, that today’s younger generations carry this perspective into their working lives, where, among other things, they fully expect to be compensated accordingly. And if they’re not? Well, as the Randstad survey shows, they will boldly take matters into their own hands—and say show us the money.

Read at Forbes.com

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About The Author
Mark Perna
Mark C. Perna is an international speaker and bestselling author. He also serves as CEO of TFS Results, a strategic consulting firm at the forefront of the national paradigm shift in education and workforce development.
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