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Research reveals significant shift in life goals and ambitions among Singaporean white collar workers

Traditionally, Singaporeans’ life goals and ambitions were typified by the ‘5Cs’ – Cash, Credit Card, Country Club, Condominium and Car. But, is this material-centric concept still relevant in this modern society?

Well, according to an independent research conducted by Tigerhall, the answer is a solid ‘No’. In fact, the traditional 5Cs mentality has given way to a new definition of the concept.

The study, which surveyed 1,000 Singapore-based white collar workers aged between 21 to 60 years old, unveiled that a majority of Singaporean white collar workers identified a new set of 5Cs – earning cash, establishing a good career, developing a cultural proficiency, holding credibility, and enjoying access to convenience.

Here are the key findings from the study:

  1. 94% of respondents identified cash as a priority, highlighting the importance placed on wealth accumulation by Singaporean white-collar workers.
  2. Career was a priority identified by 85% of respondents. Despite scoring high among all age groups, this trend was especially apparent among Singaporeans at the beginning of their career. Almost nine out of 10 respondents under the age of 29 felt that establishing a good career was important to them.
  3. 74% of respondents also placed importance on developing a cultural proficiency through opportunities such as travelling the world, with millennial respondents once again driving this trend.
  4. Holding credibility in society and workplace was identified as an important factor to achieve by 67% of respondents. Respondents in the middle of their careers were the driving forces behind this trend. Seven in 10 white collar workers between the ages of 30 and 44 felt that it was important to command the belief and trust among the people around them.
  5. Enjoying convenience from products and services was the final addition to the new set of 5Cs. Reflective of today’s digital age, 54% of respondents placed importance in having access to the convenience derived from products and services in their daily lives.
Infographic from Tigerhall

Additionally, while cash remains king, the other factors typically associated with the traditional definition of 5Cs – owning credit cards, enjoying country club memberships, living in a condominium, and driving a car – ranked low in the study.

Approximately one in three respondents felt that owning a condominium (33%), credit card (32%), and a car (30%) was important to them. Country club access proved to be especially unpopular among Singaporeans today as only 3% of respondents identified a membership as a priority in life.

“The findings uncovered in this research are reflections of the evolving mindsets of society and sheds light on the key attributes of professionals today – ambitious, open-minded, constantly seeking personal growth and wants the world at his or her fingertips,” said Nellie Wartoft, CEO of Tigerhall.

“These trends are also aligned with the observations I have made during my time as a recruitment consultant in Singapore and most recently as founder of Tigerhall. Today’s hungry professionals seek accessible but effective methods to learn, grow and move closer to achieving their goals and to gain the respect of their peers,” she added.