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Generation Y: less entrepreneurial and high risk, but more likely to jump ship, according to survey

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Generation Y employees see themselves as more risk averse and less entrepreneurial than their older colleagues, according to a report published today by job website Monster.com and consultancy firm Millennial Branding.

The research also found that Gen Y-ers (loosely defined as workers between the ages of 18 and 29 years old) are more likely to 'jump ship' and move between jobs as they search for their perfect career path.

According to the survey of 2,828 people, only 32% of Gen Y workers consider themselves to be entrepreneurial, compared to 41% of Gen X employees (those aged 30-49 years old) and 45% of baby boomers (50-69 years old).

And only 28% of Gen Y respondents identified with being high risk - a common trait in entrepreneurs - compared to 40% of Gen X and 43% of boomers.

Many Gen Y staff also view their current employer as only a 'step' in their career path. More than half (55%) of the Gen Y employees surveyed said they felt this way and only 26% said they intended to stay with their current employer for a long time.

The research also indicated a rise in 'intrapreneurship', acting like an entrepreneur within a large organisation, with 42% of all respondents feeling they have opportunities to work on projects outside their direct responsibility. But the survey highlights that there is still some way to go making sure managers understand the rewards of such behaviour; only 23% of respondents felt encouraged to work on these projects.

"The internet has created unique entrepreneurial opportunities, not just for Millennials but for all generations of workers," said Dan Schawbel, founder of Millennial Branding. "We don't see the same barriers to entry to starting a new business as we saw 10 years ago."

"This survey revealed that the entrepreneurial spirit resides in all of us and across all generations of workers," added Jeffrey Quinn, vice president, Global Monster Insights. "We are seeing more and more people across generations starting their own businesses as alternatives to traditional jobs or careers. Employer retention strategies could benefit from creating environments that encourage entrepreneurial culture and opportunities for workers."