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Maltese millennials have grown disillusioned with career
prospects, choosing instead high-paying jobs as they struggle to
keep up with increasing costs of living and hefty loans, a study
The same study debunks the belief that millennials in the labour
market are the only ones seeking flexible work arrangements in a
The study by Eugenia Sammut for a University of Malta Master of
Arts in Management by Research was based on an online questionnaire
in January 2022 and subsequent focus groups between July and
Sammut, who was supervised by Vincent Cassar, received 566
replies to her questionnaire. Over half of them were millennials,
born between 1981 and 1996.
On average, millennials scored lower than the rest on job
satisfaction, employee engagement and employee well-being, and
higher scores on intention to leave.
Participants felt millennials had it more difficult than the
rest as they are faced with an increased cost of living that is not
reflected in their salaries, finding themselves “stuck”
with a loan and, therefore, not free to move around in the labour
market, Sammut told Times of Malta.
In order to keep up with high cost of living, millennials have
shifted their focus from what they enjoy doing (such as teaching),
to jobs that pay them well.
“Flexibility in time and place allows more
time for non-work commitments.”
The older generations are, meanwhile, “comfortable”
without huge loans to pay off, while the pandemic has brought about
the realisation among Gen Z (born between 1997 and 2012) that they
need to prioritise their own well-being.
“Additionally, compared to the older generations,
millennials have also always had access to mass media and the
internet, where they are exposed to the adverse effects of things
such as climate change, making them even more disillusioned with
their future prospects,” Sammut added.
Sammut’s focus groups were held soon after Malta adopted
the EU work-life balance directive, among others allowing men 10
days of paternity leave and giving parents of children under eight
the right to request flexible work arrangements.
However, her participants noted that time was a limited resource
across all ages and not just those with parental duties – or
millennials, as most believe.
“Flexibility in time and place allows more time for
non-work commitments. Employers should not make assumptions on what
employees require to reach a work-life balance, so measures of
flexibility at work need to be implemented according to individual
needs, and not be a one-size-fits-all sort of situation,”
This article was first communicated by the Times of Malta on
the 25h of January 2023.
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