The Great Resignation was said to be a Covid-era phenomenon, but new survey results suggest that employee departures are here to stay. LinkedIn and CensusWide asked more than 2,000 U.S. workers about their professional plans for the coming year. As it turns out, 61% are considering leaving their jobs in 2023.
The pandemic contributed to unrest and uncertainty for both employers and their employees, as companies scrambled to stay profitable while maintaining safety in the workplace, and workers looked for new opportunities offering better pay and more perks, such as the ability to work from home and even 4-day work weeks.
It turns out that what was thought to be a pandemic pandemonium of job hopping is actually a hard-wired trait among the Gen Z and millennial generations. The survey found that 72% of Gen Zers and 66% of millennials are mulling a career change this year, compared to just 55% of Gen Xers (ages 42-57) and 30% of baby boomers (ages 58-76).
This is nothing new. Articles from Business Insider and Inc. suggest millennials were unhappy at work well before Covid-19 came about. Now that Gen Zers have entered the workforce, the data suggests they are even more unhappy than the generation before them.
Happiest Jobs By Generation
If you fall into this majority and feel stuck at work, how do you find a job you love? Data compiled by Glassdoor shows which jobs make each generation the happiest. Here is a quick summary of the findings with the full lists provided below.
The happiest jobs for Gen Z include corporate recruiter, marketing manager, and social media manager at the top of the list. This younger generation entered a job market that was partially broken and is used to a hybrid or fully remote work environment. They are still figuring out what they want, but are in search of an employment opportunity that aligns with their personal values.
Here are the happiest jobs for Gen Z:
- Corporate Recruiter
- Marketing Manager
- Social Media Manager
- Data Scientist
- Product Manager
- IT Specialist
- Account Coordinator
- Credit Analyst
- Project Engineer
- Business Development Associate
As for Millennials, they’ve been in the workforce longer and consequently have their sights set on more lucrative careers. The top 3 happiest jobs are Realtor, Corporate Recruiter, and Full Stack Engineer. With the upward trend the real estate market has seen in the last ten years, it’s no surprise that Realtors are happy!
Here are the happiest jobs for millennials:
- Corporate Recruiter
- Full Stack Engineer
- Chief Operating Officer
- Tech Account Manager
- SEO Analyst
- Executive Director
- Technical Recruiter
- Salesforce Developer
Of course, humans are inherently different beings, so while a job as a Realtor or Corporate Recruiter might make one person overjoyed, the next might be miserable in the same position. The list of happiest jobs are all opportunities to work for someone else, which for some makes them unhappy to begin with.
There is another sought-after option among younger generations: self-employment.
Be Your Own Boss
As it turns out, younger generations are more inclined to strive to be their own boss. Perhaps this feeds into the rising unhappiness among employees, but a Microsoft report from September 2022 found that 76% of Gen Zers and millennials aspire to become self-employed compared with just 63% of those Gen X and older.
So for those of you that fall into this category and want to become your own boss, here are some favorites pulled from Entrepreneur’s list of best businesses to start right now.
The gig economy is growing, and there are more freelance opportunities than ever before. To complement the demand, platforms like Fiverr & Upwork make it easy to advertise your services to a massive audience within minutes.
Freelancers that put in the effort make good money and enjoy the comfort of being their own boss. Of course, how much money you make depends on the hours you put in, types of services you offer, and demand, among other factors.
First of all, becoming an influencer can mean a lot of things, but anyone that possesses the ability to impact purchase decisions stands to make a decent living. Sure, there is an endless supply of Instagram & TikTok influencers out there, but YouTubers, Bloggers, Podcasters and Twitch streamers carry significant influence as well.
Influencers operate in a lifestyle business model, a venture that provides significant earnings potential, time freedom, and location independence. Live the laptop lifestyle without the fear of failing financially.
Starting a blog is often mentioned as the most popular choice among aspiring entrepreneurs and influencers for a couple of reasons. First, there is no need to reveal your identity at the inception of your blogging business, which allows people that need the income from their current occupation to sleep at night knowing their boss won’t discover their exit strategy.
Second, the initial upfront investment is minimal. There aren’t many other businesses with the upside blogging offers that require almost no startup capital.
A consultant is essentially a glorified freelancer. Simply package up your skill set and offer your services to companies for a set fee on a monthly basis. This requires more attention to the relationship but is worth it for the increased stability.
Consulting relationships are mutually beneficial for the most part because they allow companies to contract services based on their needs without hiring a full-time employee, paying the benefits, contributions, and more. Working with a consultant gives these corporations added flexibility while the consultants themselves remain self-employed and bring in a steady paycheck.
Where To Go From Here
There is no doubt that younger generations are unhappy with their current employment situation. If you are a part of this majority, it is important to understand that times have changed. Corporations no longer hold all the bargaining power in the labor market, and there are more opportunities than ever to advance your career. Plus, job seekers now have increased access to jobs through the rise of employment platforms and recruiting organizations, so be sure to know what is out there.
As for those of you who place a high priority on being able to work on your own terms, don’t be afraid to start that side hustle you’ve been thinking about. Real businesses aren’t built in a day, or even in a year, so start small and make progress every day. Those efforts will start to add up quicker than you might think!