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Not perks, but respect. What young workers really want on the work floor

New research points to an important switch in values among young workers. The research shows what employees (between 21 and 34 years old) find important at the work floor. And no, this has nothing to do with weekly bootcamps, drinks at the bar or more holidays. It’s respectful communications that keep younger employees committed to their work.

The survey among 1000 US workers is especially relevant today with many companies moving into a more hybrid work style. The survey revealed that autonomous respect, the sense that one is responsible for making decisions, and respectful engagement, being present to others, affirming them, communicating and listening to them, both helped young workers to bounce back after adversity, to perform better in their jobs and be more committed to their organizations in the long term.

“Coming to work may not be joyful every day, but if work is something where I can feel fulfillment, I can feel respected as a human being, and most important, that I can feel that I have earned the respect and recognition that I’m given by my boss and by my coworkers.” – According to professor at the Missouri School of Journalism and author of the publication Margaret Duffy.

This shift in values on the work floor is consistent with the shift we’ve encountered at TrendsActive: there’s a growing body of research stating that our search for happiness doesn’t lead to a fulfilling life. People also experience it themselves, although we get offered many tools to experience happiness, many of us are still suffering from mental health issues like depression, anxiety and burn-outs. People are increasingly searching for meaning (long term fulfillment in life) instead of happiness (short moments of joy).This research contributes to our findings that people are increasingly looking for meaning, also on the work floor.

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Image credits: Leon