Talent Snapshot:
Generosity by the Generations

What does Generosity look like across the Generations?

There are significant differences between the generations when it comes to generosity. Whether you are looking to support your managers who fall into the Millennial generation or recruit the future of your business with Gen Z, this chapter aims to call out the specific needs and wishes by generation.

Snapshot of Gen Z—Entry-Level Employees

Gen Z is typically comprised of employees between the ages of 18 and 27—those most likely to be in entry-level positions. When it comes to these employees, the biggest thing to know is that they are the most motivated to leave a job due to a lack of generosity—whether it be a lack of generosity to employees (62%), to the community (52%), or in the way a business operates (51%).

Other key insights include: 

Burnt OutA shocking 83% of Gen Z are grappling with burnout in the workplace. Nearly a third (28%) are completely burnt out or managing high levels of burnout that directly affect their work. 

Because of this, they are perhaps more likely than their older peers to name mental health support as an important demonstration of generosity and say that mental health support has a major influence on their productivity.

Place Higher Value on Green PracticesThis generation is more likely to think about how a company’s business operations have a positive influence on people and the planet. Potentially because of this, they widely claim the importance of sustainable green practices (86%) as a key demonstration of generosity compared to other generations. 

Seeking Diverse Workplaces: More than anyone else, Gen Z stressed that having more colleagues with different backgrounds, experiences, and points of view (57%) contributes to a positive culture.

Anxious About Politics: As we enter another election cycle, it’s worth noting that nearly two-thirds of Gen Z employees (59%) think 2024 politics will be somewhat or very disruptive to a positive company culture. This compares to just 47% of Millennials and 38% of Gen X. 

Snapshot of Millennials—Managers and Mid-Level Executives

Millennials typically include employees aged 27-42, which likely represents most manager-level employees. What’s important to note is that more than any other generation, Millennials say a generous workplace is extremely important (49%).

Additionally, Millennials seek empathy from their superiors, recognition for the work they are doing, and support for this busy stage of life. 

Need Practical Employee Care: When it comes to the most important demonstrations of generosity, Millennials are 10 points more likely than other generations to say flexibility (69%), expanded maternal health care (63%), and emergency financial assistance (62%) are very important.

This may be because they are more likely to be juggling younger children at home, saving for college while also paying off their student loans, and dealing with high levels of burnout. In fact, 69% of Millennials are grappling with burnout, and 20% are completely burnt out or managing a high level of burnout that affects their work.

Seeking Empathy and Flexibility: When it comes to fostering a positive company culture, Millennials need managers who care about them as people (68%). This desire for increased empathy impacts productivity—Millennials are most interested in being rewarded for the quality of their work and not the number of hours worked.

In addition, they are more likely than other employees to say childcare (48%) and mental health support (66%) positively influence their productivity.

Willing to Walk AwayMillennials are less likely than Gen Z to leave jobs due to a lack of generosity, but they are still more likely to do so than Gen X. In fact, 44% left due to a lack of generosity to employees, and nearly 1-in-3 left due to a lack of generosity to the community and in business operations.

Trust Employers to Weather PoliticsNearly half (47%) of Millennials think 2024 politics will be somewhat or very disruptive to company culture. The good news? Millennials are more likely to say they strongly agree that they trust the company they work for and the people who run their company.

To continue building this trust, Millennials value personal interactions with senior leaders (93%) and transparency in business decisions (91%).

Snapshot of Gen X—Leadership

When it comes to Gen X, these employees tend to be between 43 and 59 years old and generally hold leadership positions within a company. They are most interested in being respected and appreciated for the work they have done, less concerned with the inner workings of the office, and aim to enjoy their time more. 

Balanced and HappyGood news—this group is more likely (38%) than their Gen Z colleagues to say they have no burnout and are very happy at work. As these are the employees most likely to be in leadership positions, this bodes well for their management and ability to establish a good work–life balance.

Politics Does Not Phase ThemWhile 56% of executives think politics will disrupt the workplace, a remarkable 63% of Gen X think this election cycle will have no impact on company culture. Only 8% of Gen X worry that it will be very disruptive.

Encourage Full Use of BenefitsWhen it comes to building a positive company culture, the second most important aspect of a positive company culture for Gen X is the encouragement of wellness and making full use of their benefits (65%) (more so than their younger colleagues). 

Celebrate Their Good WorkConcerning a positive company culture, Gen X is most interested in their good work being celebrated (65%). This also impacts their productivity, with 27% of Gen X seeing being rewarded for the quality of their work as more important than the hours they have worked. 

Willing to Walk AwayRegardless of the years spent with the company, Gen X are still willing to leave when generosity is neglected. In fact, 51% of Gen X have left jobs due to the company’s lack of generosity to employees—this number is surprisingly more than Millennials (44%) but still far behind Gen Z (62%).

Explore further insights: