The future workforce cares about your sustainability goals.

January 15, 2019 Jason Grouette

students applying post it notes to wall

Today, so many of us are working to put strong sustainability goals and action plans in place. To realize our long-term vision, we need to have a steady talent pipeline for years to come.

As demographics shift from millennials to generation Z to generation Alpha, so do each cohort’s priorities, values, and beliefs. If we hope to continue to attract top talent, what kind of companies must we be?

If we hope to continue to attract top talent, we believe we need to shape not just our recruitment strategies, but also our corporates cultures, to keep them engaged.

Watch: Young talent share their desire to work for sustainable businesses.

Feedback from Canadian students shows sustainability is a priority.

At 3M, we’re fortunate to have many opportunities to engage with students from across the country. In the last year alone, we have connected with hundreds of students from primary school to post-secondary school in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Halifax, and our hometown of London, Ontario.

When we ask young Canadians about their dream jobs are and the types of companies they want to work for, they all express very similar values.

Our future workforce wants to work somewhere that “does good” – for their customers, their employees, their communities, and the environment.

Attracting talent: five values our future workforce is looking for.

No matter their age or geography, our conversations with Canadian students have revealed five characteristics they are seeking from their future employer:

  1. Diversity: age, race, gender, specialty – the more diverse the better. Tomorrow’s workforce wants to feel valued as individuals with unique perspectives and experiences.
  2. Collaboration: Students want to work somewhere they are encouraged to share these perspectives. They see how powerful it can be to combine many different approaches, and want to be empowered to do so.
  3. Innovation and risk-taking: Our future workforce also want permission to fail. They are hopeful about the impact they can make on the world, but believe they will have to operate differently to make it happen. If things don’t go their way, they want to be empowered to learn from it – rather than be punished.
  4. Social cause: Tomorrow’s talent wants to work somewhere that is more than their products and services. They want to work somewhere that stands for something.
  5. Transparency and authenticity: We need to walk the talk, or suffer the consequences. The next generations are increasingly savvy. For them, it’s not enough to have good intentions. They want to work for companies who actually take action and make an impact.

group of children at STEM event

To put a brighter future within reach, we must have a workplace culture that is equipped to meet these needs. If we start to shift our approaches and influence change, we can be ready to meet the future together.

Learn more about sustainable business.

Sustainability is a journey. As we gain new insights, we invite you to follow along as we build best practices and share your own. Sign up for our newsletter to be a part of the conversation.


About the Author

Jason Grouette

[enBio=Jason is a veteran change agent. With nearly 20 years of experience at 3M, he has a reputation for embracing shifts in the market, and redefining strategy and operations to help both his people and his business succeed. Prior to leading the Electronics & Energy Business Group, Jason led the Personal Safety Division – 3M Canada’s largest portfolio – and worked as a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt.],[enJob=Director, Electronics and Energy Business Group, and Executive Sponsor, Sustainability, 3M Canada],[frBio=JJason est un agent du changement chevronné. Avec près de 20 ans d’expérience chez 3M, il a la réputation d’adopter les changements au sein du marché, en plus de redéfinir les stratégies et les opérations pour aider ses employés et ses activités à obtenir du succès. Avant de diriger le Secteur d’activité électronique et énergie, Jason a dirigé la Division des produits de protection individuelle — la plus vaste gamme de produits de 3M — et il a travaillé en tant que ceinture noire Six Sigma.],[frJob=Directeur, Secteur d’activité Électronique et énergie, et cadre responsable, Durabilité, Compagnie 3M Canada]

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