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Are Millennials Ready For The Corner Office?
Survey: Most CFOs Confident Millennial Employees Prepared for Leadership Positions

MENLO PARK, Calif., June 21, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Most CFOs have faith in millennial workers' abilities to become future leaders, recent research from Robert Half shows. Eighty-five percent of CFOs interviewed said they are confident their millennial employees -- the swath of workers born between 1978 and 1999 -- possess management potential.

Millennials Ready to Climb the Corporate Ladder

The survey also found businesses are offering professional development resources to help these workers prepare for leadership positions. CFOs said their organizations most often provide ­­onsite training (60 percent); opportunities to attend conferences, seminars and webinars (57 percent); and mentoring programs (55 percent).

"Millennials are a highly educated, ambitious group who gravitate toward jobs that provide meaningful personal and professional growth," said Paul McDonald, senior executive director at Robert Half. "To retain these employees and develop them into next-generation leaders, companies must provide plenty of training and stretch assignments as well as clear paths for career advancement."

McDonald added, "Managers should also recognize millennial workers' desire for frequent feedback. Even the best performers benefit from consistent coaching."

View an infographic of the survey findings.

CFOs were asked, "How confident are you that millennial workers at your firm are prepared to assume leadership positions?" Their responses:

Very confident


Somewhat confident


Not very confident


Not at all confident


Don't know




*Responses do not equal 100 percent due to rounding.

CFOs were also asked, "Which of the following, if any, is your firm using to train millennial workers for leadership positions?" Their responses**:

Onsite training


Conferences, seminars and webinars




Memberships to professional and trade associations


Online courses


Subscriptions to trade publications


**Multiple responses allowed.

For more insight on preparing millennials for advanced positions, download Creating a Leadership Pipeline: Developing the Millennial Generation Into Finance Leaders from Financial Executives Research Foundation (FERF), Robert Half and author Michael S. Seaver.

Robert Half offers five tips for tailoring professional development to millennials:

  1. Learn what makes them tick. Millennials commonly seek inclusive and transparent workplaces, and many expect to move into leadership roles rapidly. Capitalize on their problem-solving skills, curiosity and confidence.
  2. Support their professional growth. Listen to what workers envision for their careers, and give them assignments to help them move in that direction.
  3. Let them manage. Starting with smaller initiatives, enable them to flex their ingenuity as project leaders. Give guidance, but allow them to set strategy.
  4. Pair them with a mentor. In addition to sharing insights and unwritten rules of the workplace, mentors can help millennial employees hone their soft skills such as communication and collaboration.
  5. Be accessible. Research shows millennials often prefer face-to-face interaction with their managers. Help them become next-generation leaders by communicating in person, when possible.

While millennials, like any group, are not uniform in their goals and preferences, research for Get Ready for Generation Z from Robert Half and Enactus provides insights into their work priorities and styles.

About the Survey
The survey was conducted by an independent research firm and is based on telephone interviews with more than 2,200 CFOs from a stratified random sample of companies in more than 20 of the largest U.S. metropolitan areas.

About Robert Half 
Founded in 1948, Robert Half is the world's first and largest specialized staffing firm. The company has more than 325 staffing locations worldwide and offers online job search services on its divisional websites, all of which can be accessed at For career and hiring advice, visit The Robert Half Blog at

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SOURCE Robert Half

For further information: Bianca De Rose, (650) 234-6022,