Millennials are Planning for the Future: Start Relationships with Them Now

October 27, 2015

millennials plan for future

Contrary to popular belief, Millennials do think strategically about the future and they aren’t just living carelessly from day to day. Sure, they may not like answering the age-old “five-year plan” question, but recent research reveals that Millennials are actually surpassing their generational predecessors in taking thoughtful steps to better themselves for the future.

Our research team at LinkedIn has combined results from two studies to further understand the motives and behaviors of Millennials when planning their future. In the first study we surveyed over 5,000 Millennials on LinkedIn to learn why and how people change jobs. The second study looks at the financial behavior of about 9,000 Millennials across the world and hones in on behaviors unique to the affluent population.

Changing Jobs: Opportunities First, Money Second

Millennials are not naively joining companies that offer cool perks.When it comes to switching jobs, the primary motivation among this generation is finding a job that gives them opportunities to advance in their career. With career advancement at the forefront, Millennials are strategically planning their professional growth and aren’t just jumping around impulsively.

Given this, it’s no surprise that the second-most important factor for Millennials is compensation. And they are making sure they get what they deserve. Our data shows that 78% of Millennials are making more money after changing jobs. But what do they do with this extra cash? Turns out most of them are saving a large chunk of it.  Over a third of Millennials save more than 25% of their paycheck, a significantly higher proportion than typically saved by preceding generations.

Affluent Millennials Are Entrepreneurial

The story gets even more interesting when we look at the affluent subset of Millennials. Affluent Millennials are between the ages of 18-34 and have $100K+ (or equivalent) net investible assets, excluding real estate.

At a first glance, it’s apparent that since Affluent Millennials make more money, they save more money, but what really sets them apart is their uniquely ambitious mindset.

For one, they are more likely to be entrepreneurs. Almost a third of Affluent Millennials said they are planning to start their own business.

They are also likely to set similarly ambitious goals, such as starting a charitable foundation or buying a second home.  To make these goals a reality, Affluent Millennials are financing their ambitions in a strategic manner: we saw that they are three times more likely than Affluent Gen X to have business loans.


They Are Open to Advice

Affluent Millennials’ strategic planning extends beyond how they finance their goals. In fact, they tend to be fairly confident investors, but are they doing it all by themselves? Looks like they are open to some help.  Our study shows that 34% of Affluent Millennials consider a financial advisor a “must-have” which is significantly more than their Gen X counterparts. But even with a financial advisor, Affluent Millennials remain directly involved in researching and validating their financial options.

What the Findings Mean for Financial Services

Clearly, the future plays a big role in how Millennials take action both financially and professionally. Millennials should not be ignored as they are putting significant time and effort into their finances, and in turn, how they can optimally finance their long term goals. As financial services providers, it’s important to start building relationships with them early to earn their trust and loyalty. When working with Affluent Millennials in particular, take time in understanding their goals and ambitions to provide the most relevant financial planning support.

To learn more about Millennials and their financial behavior, be sure to check out our US specific report, Winning Affluent Millennials: How This New Power Persona is Reshaping The Finance Industry.


Methodology: Study #1: LinkedIn surveyed 10K+ professionals  who changed companies between December 2014 and March 2015, as self reported on their LinkedIn profiles and confirmed in the survey. Out of those 10k professionals, 5,692 are Millennials.  We invited LinkedIn members to participate in this survey through an email invite sent in March 2015.

Study #2: In April of 2015, LinkedIn and Ipsos conducted a global study of 9,200 Millennial and GenX Internet users across 10 countries (United States, Canada, United Kingdom, France, Netherlands, Australia, India, Singapore, Hong Kong and Brazil).  The 20-minute online survey measured respondent usage of and engagement with financial services offerings, as well as their attitudes and opinions about the finance industry.

*Image Source