Business focus: the importance of ethics to millennials

Posted 17.01.2020

Like it or not, by 2020 millennials will make up half of the working population who will hold high economic value. Their expectations concerning sustainability will continue which could become a concern for business owners who hope to keep their customer base growing without changing practice.

Millennial professionals are becoming choosier about the businesses and brands which they associate with, starting from employment right down to everyday purchases. Many would be willing to trade a portion of their salary in exchange for a better working environment, encouraging companies to market and enhance their culture when it comes to attracting the best possible candidates.

When it comes to millennials, a strong brand isn’t always enough to lock in a sale. Many choose to spend where it counts. This could include services or quality well-researched products which offer something back to society, which ought to encourage businesses to act more ethically, not only for morality but to meet consumer demand.

Millennials spending habits tend to focus more on experiential opportunities rather than ownership, with more spending on holidays and activities and putting off expensive commitments such as a new home or a new car. These behaviours may encourage new businesses to consider the way in which their consumers interact with their brands, offering more than just an off-the-shelf product.

Over the last five years, 86% of millennials have claimed sustainable investing has become more important to them, which is higher than any other generation, with 79% for Gen Xers and 67% of Baby Boomers. Overall, more than 50% of people buy from businesses with good corporate social responsibility and avoid those with controversies.

Although these matters hold higher importance with the millennials, there is a clear generational demand for businesses to move towards more sustainable methods across all generations. Perhaps we need to keep this in mind moving forward when it comes to desirability and sustainable success.