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Today It’s All About Meaning

I heard Tod Maffin speak recently about recruiting the Facebook generation, and one of the things he said was in the employment market, the 1970s were about stability, the 1980s were about money, the 1990s were about balance, and today it’s about meaning. I think that is supported in this article.

From the National Post, by Matthew Jay on March 19, 2008…

OTTAWA – More Canadians are looking for a job that is challenging and rewarding, as opposed to one with high wages and a quick climb up the corporate ladder, according to an online poll.

The results appear to mesh well with trends being seen by career counsellors, with intangible career expectations receiving more attention from job seekers.

Results of the poll, based on the responses of 4,721 participants at, showed 53% of job seekers are looking for “challenging work that is fulfilling.” This is in contrast to 27% who were looking for “financial gain and advancement” and 20% who preferred “job security, even if it means a less challenging role.”
Results on the French-language site were even more stark, with 70% of respondents looking for personal gratification over high compensation and job security.

According to Dawn Legault, the director of career development at Carleton University in Ottawa, the poll results mirror the attitudes of students moving into the workforce today. She said young people are more concerned about finding an organization that fits their lifestyle and values rather than one that will provide superior compensation.

“Across the board, these are the questions students are asking,” she said. “I think it’s an overall question of lifestyle. It’s about finding a fit with personal values and those of an organization.”

Legault estimated only a quarter of questions posed by students during university-hosted information sessions with prospective employers are related to compensation and security.

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