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August 5, 2011 2:50 pm

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Despite tales of widespread unemployment many young graduates it seems remain undaunted and plan to leave their current job in under two years.

Although the majority of graduates questioned were happy in their work, nevertheless they cite career progression as the main reason for moving on, indicating that they see little chance of promotion within their current organisations.

The report - Great Expectations: Managing Generation Y - from the Institute of Leadership & Management and Ashridge Business School in the UK questioned more than 1,900 graduates and managers. The findings point to a clear disconnect between the expectations of employers and graduates.

Whist the employers place much emphasis on good management and leadership, graduates in contrast cite the importance of money, status and career advancement, aspects which are not so highly valued by their employers.

When questioned, 57 per cent of graduate recruits said that they planned to leave their current role within two years, with 40 per cent hoping to find a new job within a year.

“Recent graduates are hugely ambitious and are looking for rapid career progression and it seems that the majority do not expect to be able to progress within their current organisation,” says Penny de Valk, chief executive of the Institute of Leadership & Management.

Organisations she adds invest considerably in graduate talent to drive innovation and competitiveness, however graduates’ desire to move on so rapidly “undermines efforts to manage talent effectively and promote the long-term success of the organisation”.

Kai Peters, chief executive of Ashridge says the disconnect between graduates’ expectations and what organisations actually provide needs to be bridged. In this way he adds “employers can pave the way for both better graduate recruitment and retention and a more productive working relationship between graduates and their bosses”.

As well as career advancement, remuneration is also a bone of contention with 45 per cent of graduate recruits stating that their salary is below their expectations. Mentoring too is also another area of dissatisfaction: 56 per cent of graduates want their managers to be a coach or mentor to them, but whilst 75 per cent of managers believe they are acting in this role in fact only 26 per cent of graduates say that this is the case.

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