Accounting is a popular career choice for Millennials, the largest generation in the Canadian workforce. Despite the fact that most Millennial employees are adding value to the accounting profession, there is a myriad of cultural judgments against their character. These judgments may be accurate concerning some Millennials, but they are likely incorrect about the majority of those who comprise this generation. Unfortunately, anti-Millennial prejudices have consequences and affect the way these individuals are received by their peers and managers.
What Millennial Accountants Want Their Employers to Know
Just like Gen X and Baby Boomer accountants, it’s probable that a sizeable percentage of Millennial accountants work hard and love their careers. There’s no doubt that they are tired of being labeled as entitled, lazy, and narcissistic. These individuals want their employers to know that…
- They want to make a difference in the accounting profession – Millennial accountants aren’t looking to spend their lives clocking in and clocking out at a job they aren’t emotionally connected to. They want to make a difference with their work, and that’s just what they are doing. Jennifer Warawa, Global Vice President of Product Marketing at Sage was recently asked by Forbes contributor Jeff Thompson how she thought Millennials were impacting the accounting profession. Her response was, “Like generations before them, millennials are driven to make an impact. They are ambitious and goal-oriented. Accounting as a profession has perhaps been a bit reluctant to embrace new technologies, such as the cloud. Millennials have no such hang-ups. They love the cloud and the flexibility it offers. So, if anything, I believe they will do more to increase widespread technology adoption, which will in turn contribute to the changing role of the CFO.”
- They want equality, not recognition, in the workplace – Millennials have a reputation for needing special attention for career accomplishments. This may be true of some workers, but most Millennials want biases in the workplace to end — that’s precisely why they are not hung up on receiving special recognition from their employers. The article 10 Myths About Millennials in the Accounting Industry reported, “Equality is a central concern for Millennials. They want managers to be ethical, fair, and transparent. In fact, they think it’s less important to have a boss who celebrates their individual accomplishments. According to Accounting and Financial Women’s Alliance (AFWA), today’s crop of accounting grads are decisively female. Millennials — male, female and intersex — assume that everyone will have access to work-life programs, regardless of gender. And they expect to work for women leaders in the future.”
- They want to give back – Did you know that at least 50 percent of Millennial accountants want to give back to their communities in significant ways? The Accounting and Finance Women’s Alliance Scholarship Program reported that half of its scholarship applicants (Millennials entering the field of accounting and finance) “valued an opportunity to give back through the profession.” These young accountants claimed to be excited about supporting non-profits, helping small businesses, and furthering financial literacy.
Making a lasting difference in the accounting profession, promoting equality in the workplace, and giving back to their communities are just a few things that Millennials bring to the table of accounting and finance. Young accountants want their employers to know this.
What type of impact do you see Millennials making in the accounting profession?