Generation Y males have the more optimistic view of the economy than any other demographic, according to a new survey.
The Allianz poll asked 1,200 Australians to rank from one to 10 their optimism in relation to the economy, the environment, society, and their own future prospects of happiness.
According to the survey, men aged 18 to 34 are the most optimistic about the economy, beating their female counterparts and their parents’ generation.
Bank balances above $80,000 have a positive impact upon optimism, the study found, with WA and SA identified as the country’s happiest states.
Eighty-five percent of respondents in these states reporting feeling upbeat about their future, compared with just 68% of Queenslanders.
Of the people in Tasmania, Victoria and New South Wales, between 72% and 79% reported feelings of optimism.
The university-educated are more upbeat about their future happiness than people with a high school diploma or trade, and cashed-up Australians have a more positive outlook than their poorer peers.
Mark McCrindle, founder of McCrindle Research, says Gen Ys can be a “major positive” for a start-up.
“Younger people are always the most educated people in society because their education is the most recent and up-to-date,” McCrindle says.
“They also have the bulk of their working life ahead of them, so they’re very empowered. It’s in this optimistic zone in which they begin their career.”
“They’re also more innovative because of their age and more adaptable because of their time… which is what every start-up needs.”
According to McCrindle, one in four Gen Ys expects to be self-employed at some point in their life.
He says men in their 20s are more likely to go into business because they take more risks, but he has also seen massive growth among women in their 30s who often start-up their own businesses for lifestyle reasons.
With regard to recruiting Gen Ys, McCrindle advises employers to “make it worth their while”.
“Offer them profit share opportunities and tap into the entrepreneurial spirit that they have [by offering] ownership, control and freedom,” he says.
“Also, incorporate generational diversity into the workplace in the same way you would incorporate gender and cultural diversity.”