Life is full of choices. How many of us have heard that before? How many of us have said that before?

While most people believe life is full of choices, twenty to thirty years ago, employees did not feel they had many choices in the work world. If one wanted to remain employed, one “kept their nose to the grind stone”. Even though we all intellectually knew we had choices, we did not think quitting our job was an option. In fact, we did not really feel changing jobs was much of an option.

In the 21st-century work world, there is a 180° difference. Leaders in the 21st century must adapt to this new reality. If we, as leaders, apply the same logic (and, may I say, flawed logic) we used twenty years ago, we will lose our top talent. The 21st-century workforce actually believes work is the biggest choice they make.

Millennials decided long ago that time equals life. How they choose to spend their time is how they are choosing to live their life. And life, indeed, is full of choices.

Gen Y, the workers we will be hiring for the next ten years (at least — the youngest is currently 15-years-old), are all about accountability and choosing where to spend their time. The projects they undertake are how they are choosing to spend their work time. Most importantly, and let me be crystal clear, the leaders they choose to work for are how they are choosing to be led.

When we are working with leaders around the world, the question, “Are you worth choosing as my leader?” tends to be a very powerful question we ask. If I work for you I am choosing to be led by you. Are you worth that choice?