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Survey: Career Advancement Trumps Financial Incentives for Millennials, Gen X

Graduate students at the country's leading business schools prefer opportunity for advancement within an organization over financial incentives when evaluating career destinations, according to a Deloitte survey.

October 31, 2011
Related Topics: Strategy and Management
KEYWORDS career
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New York — Oct. 31

Graduate students at leading business schools prefer opportunity for advancement within an organization over financial incentives when evaluating career destinations, according to a Deloitte survey, conducted at the fifth annual National MBA Human Capital Case Competition, which was held Oct. 27-29 at Vanderbilt University's Owen Graduate School of Management.

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's Kenan-Flagler Business School captured top honors at the competition, which recognizes the student teams' problem-solving and analytical skills, creativity and ability to stay focused under pressure.

Teams from University of California, Berkeley's Haas School of Business and Emory University’s Goizueta Business School collected second-place and third-place honors, respectively.

The Human Capital Case Competition is designed to engage MBA students in solving real-world human capital business issues. Additionally, Deloitte surveyed participants to glean insight into their perceptions of the most pressing workforce issues and to better understand the goals, expectations and desires of the next generation of potential leaders.

Conducted by Deloitte earlier this month, a survey of 43 participating students representing the millennial demographics (ages 16 to 31) and Generation X (ages 32 to 47) revealed 64 percent consider job advancement as the most important factor when deciding where to launch or continue their career. Compensation and benefits (44 percent) and "fun" work environment (33 percent) followed as the second and third most important considerations.

Students also consider professional development initiatives to be critical in their first post-graduate job, according to the survey. Results show that direct project management is valued by nearly half of the respondents as the most important tool for professional development (48 percent). Nearly 40 percent of respondents revealed direct access to management as the second most important initiative for professional development; more than three-quarters (77 percent) cited annual goal-setting.

Regarding career advancement and promotions, respondents agree 360-degree evaluations should hold the most weight (36 percent). Moreover, 47 percent agree the second most critical initiative for professional development is direct manager feedback, and all respondents agree company/industry standard exams is third most important.

Students from the following list of 11 MBA programs were chosen to compete in teams of five for $14,000 in cash prizes and be named National M.B.A. Human Capital Case Competition champions:

• Boston University School of Management
• Brigham Young University, Marriott School
• University of California, Berkeley's Haas School of Business
• Columbia Business School
• Johnson at Cornell University
• Emory University, Goizueta Business School
• The George Washington University School of Business
• Broad College of Business, Michigan State University
• The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's Kenan-Flagler Business School
• The Vanderbilt Owen Graduate School of Business
• Yale University, School of Management

Source: Deloitte

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