Dear baby boomers: We’re not going away; here’s what the millennial mindset is all about.
You see us as you want to see us — in the simplest terms and the most convenient definitions — but what we’ve found out is that each one of us is an entrepreneur, a financial adviser, a tech mogul, a personal trainer and a philanthropist.
Allow me to explain:
We are entrepreneurs because we seek opportunities and job positions in which we are encouraged to grow and take risks.
True, most of us also like the idea of having ping-pong tables and nap pods in the office, but as long as the work is challenging, the staff is fun and the products are innovative, we’re more likely to stick around.
We also want our employers to be open to new ideas and ways of going about what’s been done before more efficiently — sometimes we just know what we’re talking about, OK?
Next, we’re financial advisers because we’ve weathered the recession, took on astounding student loans and have been looked upon as “entry-level” (aka underpaid) interns for far too long.
We’ve become masters of the frugal budget and cutting costs — yes, sometimes that means we still live at home, but that doesn’t make us lazy.
We deserve to be fairly compensated for our increasingly long workweeks, considering most of us haven’t begun to earn enough to save up for retirement — but, if it were all about the bottom line, we’d gladly take more paid time off in trade for dollars.
We are also our own personal trainers. In addition to our outside passion projects and overwhelming social lives, we get stressed out, too. We’re not just sitting around playing video games and eating ramen noodles — we, too, are striving for stability and structure to our day. We, too, need to exercise, eat right, do laundry and manage our relationships.
So we appreciate when our employers realize we’re more productive employees when we’re given assigned tasks in lieu of assigned work hours and environments.
We believe that companies with flexible hours and telecommuting opportunities employ more productive, happier workforces than those that force their employees to endure soul-sucking commutes and caffeine-induced meetings.
And it’s no surprise that we’re all tech moguls — but some of us want nothing more than to step away from all that for a while. We’ve grown up with electronic devices in hand — not dirt — and we’re defined by the programs we know and are willing to teach — not by the ideas that we’ve devised via our own intelligence.
We want to “reverse mentor” you and teach you how to use technology, but in return we need your help to step away from the computer screen most of us have been forced to sit behind for 10 hours a day.
Last but certainly not least, we are philanthropists at heart. We want to change the world. We are affected by the news, and we are not necessarily driven by money or success in the ways that your generation may have been.
We deserve the time to travel and quench our wanderlust — but we promise we will come back with bigger and better ideas that will help transform the company. If our work continues to stifle our personal growth, how can our interests and values continue to evolve?
It’s not the long workweeks that bother us — it’s just that we’d rather spend the time following our passions, making our work a “way of life” rather than a “job” we have to go to everyday.
Does that answer your questions?
If not, be sure to check back in regularly as we, The Business Club @ NJBIZ, continue to write about all of the issues mentioned above and more.
The Millennial Minded
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2. MILLENNIAL MINDED: Dear millennials – Before you’re done living for the moment, stop and think about the future
3. MILLENNIAL MINDED: A company that ‘litter’-ally redefines the archaic office
4. MILLENNIAL MINDED: No college degree? No problem for this teen