Millennials seek meaning in business

Two important trends are about to clash and smart PR organizations can capitalize on them and their synergy to build more profitable businesses.

The first trend is that the oldest of the 76 million millennials (experts disagree on the exact age range but many categorize this generation as those born approximately between 1982 and 2004) will turn 30. They will enter their middle management years intent on reshaping work into a more comfortable existence. I admit I am of this generation and we are comfortable coming to work in flip-flops, jeans, and headphones.

But for all that this generation has been maligned for trying to write its own workplace rules, its denizens also bring a very special quality to business and that is their need to connect their work to a higher purpose.

Consider this against another important business trend – a renewed emphasis on building strong, collegial cultures where teamwork can flourish. As organizations look for ways to refresh and reinvigorate their cultures, they have a tremendous opportunity to look for ways to integrate clients and projects that make work more meaningful. For PR firms, this may be targeting clients with similar sensibilities or embracing pro bono work. Corporations can make sure they engage their millennials in their philanthropic efforts.

The author John Stossel, who wrote “Myths, Lies and Downright Stupidity – Why Everything You Know is Wrong,” is quoted as saying that “happiness comes when we test our skills towards some meaningful purpose.” Maybe the millennials have it right – flip-flops, work-life balance, and a higher purpose.

Originally appeared in PRWeek Insider Blog