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Working to Live or Living to Work? Dispelling Myths About Millennials

Young entrepreneurs are driven by a desire for independence, a belief in social good, and a commitment to employee happiness. That is according to Sage’s “Walk With Me” report, which examines the key characteristics, attitudes and behaviors of millennial entrepreneurs around the world.

Despite sweeping generalisations about how this generation behaves, the study shows that these business leaders have diverse traits which align them with five workplace personality types:

  • The Principled Planners – extremely methodical in their approach to work, they enjoy carefully planning for success. With an ambitious streak, they never take anything at face value and always ask a lot of questions.
  • The Driven Techies – love their work and can’t bear the thought of sitting around twiddling their thumbs, they trust in the power and efficiency of innovative technology to keep them one step ahead of the competition. They have a strong belief in its ability to accurately target their existing and future customers.
  • The Instinctive Explorers – cavalier, they love the unknown, as well as exploring uncharted territory. They trust their gut instincts and stick to their guns. A modern image is extremely important to them, as is leaving a legacy behind to be remembered by.
  • The Real Worlders – resourceful, but likely to say they rely on technology in order to succeed. When it comes to their approach to work and making decisions, they tend to alternate between going on gut instinct and taking a more methodical approach.
  • The Thrill-Seekers – easily bored and always on the lookout for the next challenge, they couldn’t care less about appearances. They work best around others and believe that making a social impact is overrated.

“As a millennial entrepreneur myself I know first-hand that this business group are shaking things up,” says Kriti Sharma, Director, Product Management, Mobile, Sage. “We’re rejecting established patterns of working and making technology work for us. We see business through a new lens. We’re willing to work hard, but want flexibility in how, when and with whom we do business.”

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62% believe they’ll be a serial entrepreneur, starting more than one than business—with 52% saying this is because they have lots of ideas they want to share with the world, according to the report.

“Millennial entrepreneurs have a huge role to play in the start-up economy and are shaping the modern workplace at great pace,” explains Stephen Kelly, Sage CEO. “But they can’t be grouped together as a homogenous stereotype. Our research shows that they fall into distinct camps with specific hopes, fears, concerns and ways of working. They will be our next generation of business builders, the heroes of the economy, and understanding what makes them tick now stands us all in good stead for the future. That’s true of the people that want to do business with them, buy from them, hire them or create policy that helps them to grow.’

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