Seasoned workers often complain that their Millennial colleagues lack organizational commitment (OC). Research findings, however, are mixed. Furthermore, research suggests that employee professional development increases job satisfaction and reduces turnover. Still, few studies have examined if professional development increases commitment, particularly among Millennials. This paper aims to discuss these issues.
This study compared survey responses, gathered through social media, of Generation X (GenX) and Millennial employees on the relationship between employee development (ED) and OC.
Millennials (vs GenXers) reported significantly lower levels of continuance commitment, but no differences on normative and affective commitment. GenXers reported more affective and normative commitment than Millennials when having ED opportunities.
ED opportunities may not be similarly impactful on OC across generational cohorts. It might stimulate commitment amongst GenXers, but not Millennials.
Findings also suggest that ED programs may be a normalized fixture in organizations today and that Millennials may take ED opportunities for granted.
This study is the first to identify potential factors influencing differences between GenXers and Millennials on OC. More research is needed to identify approaches to increasing Millenials’ commitment if managers want to keep their best employees or to ensure training and development is impactful.
Glazer, S., Mahoney, A. and Randall, Y. (2019), "Employee development’s role in organizational commitment: a preliminary investigation comparing generation X and millennial employees", Industrial and Commercial Training, Vol. 51 No. 1, pp. 1-12. https://doi.org/10.1108/ICT-07-2018-0061Download as .RIS
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