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Why 70 percent of millennials are unhappy with their jobs

Tanya Korobka

The majority of millennials from both sides of the Atlantic are unhappy in their current jobs, and that is rather alarming.

A Gallup study finds that 70 percent of U.S. millennials are disengaged at work. In fact, millennials are the least engaged population in the whole U.S. workforce.

Gallup described engaged employees as “those who are involved in, enthusiastic about and committed to their work and workplace.”

The study suggests the reason for disengagement is that millennials are working in jobs that don’t allow them to use their talents and strengths to the fullest, thus creating disengagement.

This highly ambitious generation may not be getting the jobs they had hoped for coming out of college.

CAREEREALISM and CareerHMO founder and career expert J.T. O’Donnell told Lucky Attitude

“The high rate of career disengagement in younger people comes from them arriving to the workforce eager to succeed but professionally immature. The result? They get into a new career and employer, and the first impression is that this is not what they wanted. Thus, they make a generalization that it’s the wrong career move.”

Occupational psychologist Margaret Davies commented, “There is some evidence that Generation Y tend to have an inflated sense of their abilities or unrealistic expectations of work, so they get bored more easily.”

U.K. millennials are equally disengaged at work

In June 2015, London School of Business and Finance carried out a nationwide survey to find out how happy professionals in the U.K. are with their careers, what percentage of them are looking to change careers and why they want to do so.

The survey results are uncannily similar to the research done earlier in the year by Gallup: 66 percent of the U.K. millennials are not happy with their current career choices, and 26 percent of them want to change careers in a year or earlier.

Job-hopping has become normal in the U.K. It seems millennials have more confidence, curiosity, drive to understand what they really want to do, what fulfills them and gives sense of accomplishment, and they are not afraid to act on their desires.

Lucy Standing, an occupational psychologist, said, “The U.K. has seen a trend in people working more flexibly and across more jobs. The concept of there no longer being a ‘job for life’ normalizes the process of changing jobs more frequently. Twenty years ago, an employee who had been in one job for 10 years was considered loyal; today we are likely to wonder, ‘What’s wrong with them?’”

Millennials are motivated by money — sorry to break it to you

Surveys appear to crop up with increasing frequency, telling us that millennials seek opportunities which facilitate a positive work-life balance over monetary rewards. I disagree with them. I am a millennial who is convinced that not only do we deserve to pursue our dream jobs, but we should greatly profit from them too. Money is just as, or even more, important as doing meaningful work.

The LSBF survey suggests millennials leave their current jobs for bigger salaries, whereas older-generation workers leave for better work-life balance. Be it arts, fashion or finance, the dream is to get rich doing what we love.

Perhaps the only difference between millennials and other generations is our conviction that doing what we love and wealth aren’t mutually exclusive?

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