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Yeah, I'm a Millennial

My favorite is the Korean barbecue

My favorite is the Korean barbecue

At Christmas dinner, the youngest member of my family took pictures of the awesome food she prepared.

Then, she said that’s how she is because she’s part of Generation Z.

And it got me thinking about the different generations my family members belong to — Gen Z, Millennials, and Boomers.

Then and there, I realized I was the only millennial in the room.

So here I am writing about it — about millennials.

*Disclaimer: It's important to remember that these are stereotypes and that they do not apply to all millennials. Every person is unique and has their characteristics, experiences, and challenges.

What Is a Millennial?

Anyone born between 1981 and 1996 is a Millennial.

Millennials are the generation that follows Generation X and precedes Generation Z. They are the first generation to come of age in the 21st century. And they have a knack for being heavily influenced by technology and the internet.

Other Names for Millennials

  • Generation Y
  • Echo boomers
  • Digital natives
  • Global Citizens
  • Generation “We”
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10 Unique Characteristics of Millennials

Here are 10 millennial traits:

  1. Tech-savvy: Many millennials grew up with access to technology and the internet from a young age, and are comfortable using digital devices and platforms.
  2. Social media-oriented: Millennials are often thought to be heavy users of social media, both for personal and professional purposes.
  3. Diverse: Millennials are a diverse generation, with a wide range of racial, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds.
  4. Global perspective: Many millennials have a global perspective, as they have grown up in a more interconnected world.
  5. Work-life balance: Millennials may place a higher emphasis on work-life balance. As a result, they may prioritize their personal lives over their careers.
  6. Entrepreneurial: Some millennials are drawn to entrepreneurship and may be more likely to start their businesses.
  7. Liberal: Millennials are more liberal in their political views than the previous generations.
  8. Environmental consciousness: Some millennials are interested in environmental issues and may prioritize sustainability in their personal and professional lives.
  9. Delayed adult milestones: Millennials may delay traditional adult milestones such as marriage and homeownership, instead focusing on their education and career development.
  10. Adaptable: Many millennials have grown up in a rapidly changing world and may be more open to new experiences.

Negative Connotations

Here are negative connotations about millennials:

  • Entitled: Some people view millennials as expecting too much from their jobs, relationships, and life (in general).
  • Self-absorbed: Millennials hyper-focus on their own needs and interests. They are also less supportive of others.
  • Overly sensitive: Some people view millennials as overly-sensitive and quick to take offense. They are also unable to cope with challenges or criticism.
  • Reliant on technology: Some people believe millennials are too reliant on technology and social media. As a result, they are unable to function without them.
  • Unwilling to work hard: Millennials are hesitant to put in the hard work and dedication needed to succeed. They expect everything handed to them on a silver platter.

Millennials on Making a Positive Impact

Millennials have the desire to change the world.

They often look for jobs that allow them to use their skills and talents to contribute to causes meaningful to them. As a result, they may prioritize social responsibility and sustainability in their career choices.

As a manager, you can help millennials feel that their work is purposeful by aligning their tasks and projects with the values and mission of a vital cause.

You can also encourage them to get involved in corporate social responsibility initiatives and other opportunities to give back to the community.

By supporting and encouraging their desire to make a positive impact, you can help create a more meaningful and fulfilling work experience for your millennial employees.

Final Thoughts

I think I can tick almost all the boxes on the list of negative connotations about millennials — except I would use different words.

Instead of entitled, qualified. Instead of self-absorbed, (semi) confident. Instead of being overly sensitive, empathetic. Instead of being reliant on technology, self-supporting. And instead of being unwilling to work hard, committed to negotiating better work terms.

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