International Perspectives on the Millennial Generation
Edited by Eddy S. Ng, Sean Lyons and Linda Schweitzer
Chapter 13: Cultural influences on Millennial MBA students’ career goals: evidence from 23 countries
Attracting, motivating and retaining talent that can contribute to gaining and sustaining organizational success remains one of the most significant challenges facing organizations today (Barber, 1998; Huselid et al., 2005; Scullion and Collings, 2011). Another related challenge facing employers globally is the shifting of demographics, with a large cohort of employees approaching the retirement stage of their careers and being replaced by the youngest of all named generations–the Millennials –defined in the literature as those individuals born after 1980 and before 1995 (for example, Ng et al., 2010; Zemke et al., 2000). Like all previous generations, Millennials were influenced by the unique historic, cultural, political and social events and forces of the era in which they grew up (Mannheim, 1952). Consequently, their work-related values, goals, expectations and ideals have been shaped by such forces. Existing evidence on generational differences, and in particular Millennials, suggests that these young adults hold relatively different work-related values, goals and attitudes than the members of previous generations (for example, Gursoy et al., 2008; Lancaster and Stillman, 2002). However, empirical evidence on what specific career goals members of this generation are attracted to and would like to attain is relatively limited. Understanding the career goals of the Millennial generation is important because such goals will dictate the kinds of work experiences Millennials will desire from their employers and the job opportunities they will seek throughout their careers.
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