While young female professionals have many career goals, ascending to the top of their company is not one of them, new research shows.
The study discovered that millennial women have little interest or desire to assume a top leadership position. Specifically, just 15 percent of women between ages 21 and 33 would want to be the No. 1 leader of a large or prominent organization, the study by public relations firm Zeno Group found.
An overriding theme among millennial women in the survey was an unwillingness to make the personal sacrifices they believe are linked to their ability to climb the corporate ladder. Nearly half of those surveyed think the sacrifices women leaders have to make aren't worth it, and 9 in 10 agree that women leaders have to make more sacrifices than their male counterparts.
In addition, less than half the women surveyed are willing to sacrifice aspects of their personal life to achieve professional goals.
Barby Siegel, CEO of Zeno Group, said the data show companies must get smarter and more creative in the recruiting and retention of top millennial talent.
"We need to think about doing things differently when helping millennial women develop their careers and weigh the sacrifices that may or may not be required," Siegel said. "We do not want to risk losing this talented generation of professionals."
The research uncovered a significant difference of opinions among those women who do and don't have children. Millennial moms are six times more likely than millennial women without children to say that their career is not that important to them.
Additionally, millennial moms are three times more likely than millennial women without kids to say that an inability to balance professional goals with being a parent is what is keeping them from achieving their professional goals.
"The findings send a clear signal that we cannot operate business as usual," Siegel said. "We don't want W-O-R-K becoming the new four-letter word for this generation."
The study was based on surveys of 1,000 American women ages 21 to 33 who were graduates of a four- year college or university.