Workforce 2020 at SuccessConnect

We released the findings of our huge global study this week at SuccessConnect. Oxford Economics’ Technology Practice Lead Ed Cone, who oversaw the Workforce 2020 project, presented the findings yesterday morning.

People were really interested in our findings, especially on Millennials. In fact, some were actually thanking me for the myth-busting–especially the Millennials to whom I spoke (I told them it wasn’t me, it was the survey data).

This sense of relief is a consistent theme. On my flight home, the guy next to me–a young entrepreneur–said he’s tired of people looking at his generation like aliens from outer space. I laughed and told him our junior staffers compared it to being an exotic species in a zoo. Time to move past all that and focus on the real differences.

Many more interesting conversations around the survey data and other topics, and overall a great experience at SuccessConnect.

                                                   –Ed Cone

We’ll be sharing our research on the blog and updating you on the next wave of deliverables–including fact sheets, think pieces, and interactive infographics–as they become available.

Workforce 2020 launch

The results of our huge global survey of 2,700 executives and 2,700 employees are now available.

You can download the research report, the first of our two think pieces, get information on webinars, and take a quiz about the findings here. Ed Cone will be presenting the global findings tomorrow morning at SuccessConnect; we’ll be keeping you posted on that on Twitter

Over the next few weeks, we’ll be showcasing the reports, infographics, country fact sheets, and highlights from SuccessConnect right here on the blog, so stay tuned. 

The gender pay gap

Over the past few months, we have been talking about the national and company approaches to parental leave policies—in particular, how these policies affect women’s wages and participation in the workforce.

In an article from The New York Times, Claire Cain Miller explores new research on the gender divide for parents in the workforce. She cites University of Massachusetts sociology professor Michelle Budig, whose research finds that high-earing men receive large pay bumps after having children (likely because employers consider them less likely to leave a stable job), while low-earning women are most likely to suffer. In fact, Budig’s research, based on data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, finds that “on average, men’s earnings increased more than 6 percent when they had children (if they lived with them), while women’s decreased 4 percent for each child they had.”

Most companies have not yet figured out how to develop the right policies for employees with children—the same is true for determining paid maternity and paternity leave. Combating the gender pay gap will require not just an overhaul of policies, but a change in mindset. 

2020 Workforce news roundup

One in Three U.S. Workers Is a Freelancer (Wall Street Journal): A new report from the Freelancers Union and Elance-oDesk reports that 34% of US workers qualify as freelancers. Our own 2020 Workforce survey shows that well over three-quarters of executives are increasingly using non-payroll workers, including freelancers. The labor market is changing significantly in the US and across the globe.

Apple supplier based in China accused of labour violations by US watchdogs (South China Morning Post): After scrutiny for past labor violations, Apple is again under fire for a recent report published by China Labor Watch and Green America claiming an electronics firm that supplies parts to Apple has employees—including some as young as 16—working 100 hours of overtime a month.

What employers really want? Workers they don’t have to train. (Washington Post): In this blog on executive expectations, Peter Cappelli argues that the problem with finding skilled labor is not a skills gap—it’s that employers’ expectations “have grown increasingly out of step with reality.”

How People Feel About Their Employer-Sponsored Health Plans (The New York Times): When the Urban Institute’s Health Reform Monitoring survey asked people how they feel about their company’s health plans, they found that, while a majority of respondents are satisfied with the range of services they can get on their plan, fewer are satisfied with premiums, deductibles, and protection.

Richard Branson on leadership

Our huge global survey shows that leadership is lackluster at most companies—not only are employee satisfaction rates low, but executives are not offering the feedback and development opportunities that their employees want and need.

Richard Branson, famed British entrepreneur and investor, has recently released a book on management. In The Virgin Way: How to Listen, Learn, Laugh and Lead, Branson shares what he has learned about being a leader from over 40 years in business.

 In an interview with The New York Times, Branson expands on a few of his approaches to management, including his companies’ occasional hiring of ex-convicts and his opinion on how unhappiness at work begins. While Branson may not have every answer, his success in business—and his likeliness to be named an ideal boss by British respondents to a Reed poll—suggest he may have some pointers.