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Study: Most Younger Adults Want Companies to Take a Stand on Issues

If companies want to attract younger talent, they’re going to have to get off the sidelines on issues that are important to them. That’s the results of a new study that found that while most Americans do want companies to take a stand on social issues, younger Americans are far more likely to consider it important and will decline to work for companies that aren’t taking such stands.

Overall, 64 percent of respondents to a Job Sage survey said it’s important for companies to vocally support issues they care about. But that number is much higher for Gen Z, 82 percent of whom said it’s important. Likewise, disproportionate numbers of Black Americans (83 percent) and women (72 percent) say it’s important. It seems like employees most likely to be impacted by important social issues are more likely to care about their employer sticking up for them.

Nearly one in four respondents said they’d either turned down a job offer or decided not to apply to a company at all because of its stance on social issues, and just about the same number said they’d agree to make less money at a place that stood up for important issues over more money at a place that didn’t.

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But crucially, respondents are also wary of such efforts. 53 percent said their companies’ stances on such issues came across as inauthentic or just for show. Most respondents want to see real change, not just friendly PR statements.

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