Youthful staff yearn to quit for freelancing

Britain’s freelance ranks are set to swell if calculations from an accountant’s survey are accurate and acted upon.

According to EY, almost 70 per cent of so-called ‘millennials’ want to quit their 9-to-5 and set up their own business.

Their employer not having an entrepreneurial culture was one ‘push’ factor cited by the 25-34-year-olds, of whom only about half said their skills and attributes were being fully utilised as an employee.

Such untapped competencies seem to be entrepreneurial in nature, as more than eight in ten of the respondents have or have had ideas that they claim could create revenue for their boss, found EY, formerly Ernst & Young.

The accountancy group deduces that many employers are “slow to capitalise on these entrepreneurial skills,” as only five in ten of the young professionals responding to the survey said their ideas got taken up.

This may explain why not even half of the millennials – also referred to as Generation Y - believe that they can achieve their goals in their workplace, in what seems to represent a “missed opportunity” for both parties.

“Many large businesses are failing to harness the entrepreneurial talents of their employees,” reflected the accountancy group. “[And] many respondents state that they believe there is a lack of opportunities and challenges within their organisations.”

According to the research, businesses based in London appear to be embracing an 'entrepreneurial culture' faster than other UK regions.

In fact, half of respondents working for organisations based in the capital felt their company had an entrepreneurial culture, as opposed to 29% nationally.

People working in London also recognise the significance of strong leadership, with 48% believing it is the most important skill in today’s workplace, while the rest of the country valued organisation as the most important skill.

“An entrepreneurial mind-set is often associated with small start-up businesses,” said EY’s UK managing partner Steve Wilkinson. “In reality, all organisations, regardless of size and scale, need people who can innovate, create and challenge the status quo.”


26th January 2015

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