When bosses are respectful, young people are more resilient at work and enjoy their jobs more

From ball pits to free beers, fun job perks have received plenty of press attention over the last few years. For millennials, such benefits should surely be appealing — they are, after all, the generation these perks were ostensibly designed for. But according to a new study, young people themselves have a different priority in the workplace — respect. Writing in the International Journal of Business Communication, a team led by Danielle LaGree from Kansas State University finds that being valued and respected by managers was the key factor in employees’ ability to positively adapt to the workplace. And, in turn, this impacted how loyal workers were to their employers, how much they engaged in their work, and how happy they felt overall.

Participants were 1,036 adults aged 21 to 34, all of whom were in full time employment. First, participants answered questions about “respectful engagement” at their workplaces — the extent to which colleagues express appreciation and respect for each other’s work, emphasise each other’s good qualities, and speak to each other in a respectful way.

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