What is all the hype behind the generation known as the Millennials? I can tell you, from a Career Services position, you better be researching it and finding out everything you can. Not only are Millennials our workforce of today, as the Boomers head into retirement, but they will be our managers and CEOs of tomorrow. For many of you, this may be a very scary thought.
We typically think of the following four generations: Traditionalists (born 1945 and before), Baby Boomers (born 1946 – 1964), Generation X’s (born 1965- about 1980), and Millennials (born 1980 and later).
While attending a Chamber luncheon on generational diversity, a speaker mentioned that this generation is a very confident, social and innovative group. So much so, that they disliked the original term “Generation Y”, due to the negative connotation of always asking “why?” They insisted on a new title; eventually being referred to as the Millennials.
Searching the topic “Millennials” on Bing registered a whopping 2 million results – now tell me that’s not a lot of hype! Most of the results give advice on how to communicate with, work with, as well as manage them. The top listed articles were: 11 Tips on How to Manage the Millennials written by Susan Heathfield, A United Nations article on different generations, and How to Give Four Generations Feedback.
Why is understanding the differences in generations so important to businesses? Although the amount of answers that just popped into my head would equal amount to a book, my number one answer would be that businesses want their employees to have great communication skills. And the more you know about a person’s personality traits, the better you can communicate with them… in business, or just in every day life!
If you are proactive, or just interested, you may want to start looking into the up and coming generatation: the “Nexters” or Generation Z (born after 2000) whom should be applying for positions within the next 5 years. Anyone have any thoughts on how they might be perceived?