Gen-Y (Millennials) are a hot topic, as usual. And, in the past few weeks I’ve had many interesting articles come up in my RSS feed, email and through word of mouth. I’ve summarized a few of the more interesting ones below, so check them out and let me know what you think!
On average, Millennials are comparatively spending less than Gen-X. And that’s bad for the economy, folks. On the other side of the coin though, there isn’t the earnings to match – many millennials are out of work, or working in lower-wage jobs as their education doesn’t match the job market.
Factors impacting their pockets are fewer jobs, lower earnings, poorer job quality in terms of benefits, higher debt, and higher costs for education, rent and health care. The data is a clear warning to marketers counting on discretionary dollars from young adults to jumpstart their industries out of recession. It’s not gonna happen.
Thank goodness this article is helping to shed some light on the misconceptions that have permeated mainstream opinion on Gen-Y in the workplace. The five myths and a quick summary:
- Millennials don’t want to be told what to do. (In actual fact, Millennials, like to inform themselves of the easiest way to get to the right result, so employers should take the opportunity to give great direction to employees).
- Millennials lack organizational loyalty. (Research shows Millennials have the same level of commitment as Gen X. So there. In actual fact, the rate of job changes are consistent through various ages across generations.)
- Millennials aren’t interested in their work. (To quote the article directly, “It isn’t that millennials aren’t motivated; it’s that they’re not motivated to do boring work.”).
- Millennials are motivated by perks and high pay. (According to the facts, perks are great (and millennials love them, don’t get me wrong), but they won’t change how dedicated someone is.)
- Millennials want more work-life balance. (Okay, there is some truth here. But, it’s more of an overall societal shift, and Millennials just happen to be at the forefront. So sue us.)
The Globe and Mail recently did a live chat with author Rob Carrick (who has a new book out called How Not to Move Back in With Your Parents: The Young Person’s Complete Guide to Financial Empowerment – If there’s a literary agent reading, I’d be happy to accept a freebie….). The Q&A transcript has a lot of useful information on battling student debt out of school.
A rather dark take on the trend of risk-aversion that’s seemingly attributed to Gen-Y’ers.
But Generation Y has become Generation Why Bother. The Great Recession and the still weak economy make the trend toward risk aversion worse. Children raised during recessions ultimately take fewer risks with their investments and their jobs. Even when the recession passes, they don’t strive as hard to find new jobs, and they hang on to lousy jobs longer. Research by the economist Lisa B. Kahn of the Yale School of Management shows that those who graduated from college during a poor economy experienced a relative wage loss even 15 years after entering the work force.