This Week's Herman Trend Alert

Leadership in Normal 2.0

  The Herman Trend Alert

September 12, 2007

What Young JobSeekers Want--Besides a Job

A just-released study from the Segmentation Company, a division of the market research firm Yankelovich reports that 65 percent of 1,000 respondents aged 24 to 35 said they preferred to "look for a job in the place that I would like to live," rather than "look for the best job I can find; the place where it is located is secondary."

The most popular qualities of a city (78 percent) were tidiness and attractiveness; the characteristic "will allow me to lead the life I want to lead" was a close second (77 percent). Young jobseekers want the cities they live in to be safe, clean, and green.

Forward-thinking city fathers and economic developers are romancing young workers more and more. As their Baby Boomers retire, the next generation better be there to fill the void. From coast to coast, cities, large and small, are vying to become the "in" place to be for fresh college grads.

Over the last 10 years, only 14 urban areas across the United States saw increases in this segment of workers. Those cities are Las Vegas; Nevada, Austin, Texas; Phoenix; Arizona, Atlanta, Georgia,; Raleigh-Durham, and Charlotte, North Carolina; Salt Lake City, Utah, Portland, Oregon, Denver, Colorado, Orlando, Florida, Nashville, Tennessee,; Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, Miami-Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and Greensboro-Winston Salem, North Carolina.

(We just love it, when our forecasts are validated. Last week's Herman Trend Alert discussed "Domestic and Global Brain Drains". In it we noted the renaissance of Greensboro, North Carolina.)

The organization that paid for the Yankelovich study, titled "Attracting College-Educated Young Adults to Cities", is a Chicago-based association of urban leaders called CEOs for Cities. The advice of the group is to promote the fact that your city is "clean, safe, and green".

Look for more and more municipal governments around the globe, not just in the US, to base decisions on what these young jobseekers are looking for. It will be an important key for workforce development, because without these workers, employers won't be able to stay in business, since our young people today are much more mobile and willing to relocate.

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