First Steps in the Labour Market


First Steps into the Labour Market

International survey of students and graduates

This report considers our region’s future business leaders – the ambitious and hard-working young people who are already proving themselves at Central Europe’s best universities to be at the forefront of their generation. Evidence gathered over the years shows that high-achieving students create successful careers later on, often in senior management and leadership positions.

The questions we asked them in our survey covered many areas relating to their career expectations – and their answers were frequently fascinating and unexpected.

Key findings from Lithuania

Here we outline the key views of Lithuanian respondents on issues ranging from leadership to the role of work in their lives and how they expect to be rewarded.

First Steps into the Labour Market (PDF)

Leadership and competencies

According to Lithuanian millennials, great leaders must – above all – care about their employees’ professional growth and development. They must also make a positive impact on clients and support the long-term future of the organisation. A very small percentage of those surveyed (slightly more than 2 per cent) think that meeting short-term financial goals is also among a leader’s priorities. A similar number of respondents believed that true leadership revolves around taking care of their employees’ personal income and rewards.

Lithuanian respondents were keen to become leaders. More than three quarters (76 per cent) think their friends would describe them as good leaders. They also believe that a true leader must be a charismatic and strategic thinker. It is worth noticing that whereas 66 per cent rate their leadership qualities highly, males (71 per cent) are more likely to do so than females (64 per cent).

Leadership and competencies

Motivating factors

For Lithuanians, the key motivating factor in a job is the opportunity it provides to learn something new or deepen their expert knowledge. They also value professional benefits, including material ones. They also want to be involved in assignments that match their professional interests and provide opportunities to extend their social network and engage in meaningful interaction with others.

Importance of work

Salaries and other rewards

Lithuanian respondents anticipate having a starting salary of EUR 951-1,150. One in four expects to be paid less than EUR 750, while 8 per cent would want to earn EUR 1,500 or more. Currently, an average gross salary (Q3 2017) in Lithuania stands at EUR 850.8. It is of note that males anticipate a better salary than females: whereas 34 per cent of men would like to have salary higher than EUR 1,350, the proportion of women with similar expectations is less than half this at 16.1 per cent.

Salaries and other rewards

Celebrating differences

Lithuanians value diversity: 93 per cent expressed the wish to work in an organisation that is committed to ensuring the diversity of its workforce (in terms of age, gender and nationality). It is also worth noting that young people respect more experienced and older colleagues: the vast majority (89 per cent) believe that older employees with longer careers are a valuable source of knowledge.

Celebrating differences

This rise in the value that young people ascribe to work does not mean that they’re ready to sacrifice their personal lives. Rather, they want to be part of something that is meaningful, working for an organisation where their work is appreciated, their opinions matter, they can make a difference and that is democratically managed. Indeed, nearly 39 per cent of respondents believe that a democratic approach is an important attribute of a true leader. Employers that get this balance right will win the loyalty and dedication of their most talented young people.


The four groups

Despite many similarities between high-achieving young people, it goes without saying people are not similar to one another in every aspect. Hence, four key groupings of millenials have emerged, with different attitudes to life in many areas. This allows for the identification of the four attitude related profiles. It is worth pointing out that happy family and good health are most important to all four groups, while professional work comes third for three of them. The main differences come lower down the list of options. The groups we distinguished are:

First steps into the labour market

'Fast Trackers'

They want nothing more than to get on in their careers. It is central not just to their financial progress, but to their social advancement too. That is why they commit 100 per cent of their total potential to the job – rather than having more time off, they would use it to get more done at work. They have the confidence to believe that whenever they make an effort they can always outperform others.

Fast trackers

'Eager Beavers'

For them, work is its own reward. Nothing beats the satisfaction they can gain from a good day at the office. So, while they firmly believe that they should make sacrifices in their private life to get on at work, they never see it as an unpleasant duty. While they certainly see work as key to their social and financial advancement, however, they also have some interests outside their jobs.

Eager beavers

'All Rounders'

They are really balanced. Work is not only a way to develop personally – it is also how they fulfil their duties to society. It goes without saying that they would work even if they didn’t have to. And while work is far more important than simply leading to promotions and more money, it is not the beall- and-end-all for them. Their life away from work really matters too, and they never feel that they ought to give up outside interests because of the demands of the job.



Work is far from the most important thing in their lives. It is not even a foundation for self-development or learning. Members of this group are very unlikely to let it get in the way of enjoying life away from work. It is something to put up with because they have to earn money somehow – if it was possible for them to get by without a job, they would probably give it up immediately.