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What Gen Z workers want

May 26, 2021, 10:19 AM UTC

Good morning. David Meyer here in Berlin, filling in for Alan.

People from “Generation Z” (those born after 1995) have very high expectations of their employers’ values—a fact that’s made clear in new research conducted by marketing agency Lewis for the HeForShe gender-equality movement, which is holding a major international summit tomorrow.

Most eye-catchingly, the study shows a paltry 19% of Gen Z workers would join a company that they don’t feel shares their values. And two-thirds of the survey’s 2,600 respondents from around the world said company values were more important than the firm’s leadership.

Which values? Gender and racial diversity top the list. Just over two-fifths of the respondents said they would join a company that lacks the requisite diversity, but only if it had a strong diversity, equity and inclusion program in place, to try to improve. The same proportion said CEOs should be judged by their commitment to solving social issues.

For Edward Wageni, the global head of HeForShe, the findings come as a warning to corporate leaders who have held back from making clear societal commitments—in a statement, he said they risk failing to “connect with almost an entire generation”.

Speaking of DEI efforts, Accenture’s leadership has reported back on progress the consultancy has made in meeting its public commitments after the murder of George Floyd a year ago.

In a LinkedIn post directed at Accenture’s U.S. employees, CEO Julie Sweet and Accenture North America CEO Jimmy Etheridge said African American and Black people now make up 10.1% of the company’s workforce, up from 9%, against a 2025 target of 12%. Representation of Hispanic American and Latinx people is up from 9.5% to 10.2%, with a target of 13%.

Of course, seniority is a crucial issue here—Accenture wants to increase representation of African American and Black managing directors from 2.8% to 4.4%, and that of Hispanic American and Latinx managing directors from 3.5% to 4.7%. After promotions that will be announced next week, Sweet and Etheridge wrote, the former figure will rise to 3.4%, but the latter will remain at 3.5%.

Overall, that’s certainly progress, though it’s worth remembering Color of Change president Rashad Robinson’s words in a CNN article yesterday, regarding post-Floyd corporate diversity commitments: “Some companies are doing better than others, but they all have a long way to go. There is no ‘mission accomplished’ here.”

More news below.

David Meyer
@superglaze

david.meyer@fortune.com

TOP NEWS

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This edition of CEO Daily was edited by David Meyer.

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