The Misunderstood Millennial

“Your generation doesn’t communicate properly”, “Your generation this”, “Your generation that”… I’m tired of hearing the same phrases whenever alumni come to speak in a class or whenever I go to meetings with people who have joined the workforce 20-30 years ago, and have now reached to successful positions in their careers.

Nowadays, the term millennial carries a negative connotation, especially within the workplace, since managers, who belong to “different” generations than us, seem to think that millennials are not prepared enough to enter the workforce. Some statements that are pulled from Bentley University’s preparedness study, such as “68% of corporate recruiters say that it is difficult for their organizations to manage millennials” or “59% of business decision makers and 62% of higher education influentials give recent college graduates a C grade or lower for preparedness in their first jobs”, summarize the opinions of managers about hiring millennials. These facts may have held true 20 years ago, when the rules were rigid, but the world, as well as the work force and its rules are now changing at a faster pace. As the Forbes articlsuggests, millennials might not be prepared for the 9 to 5 work hours, or the red tape and hierarchical work structures, but that doesn’t mean that we are not “prepared” overall. We are more creative, tech savvy and fast, all of which are characteristics that add value to the workplace. This positive side of the millennials hardly ever surface, and usually is left behind the shadow of all the “lazy”, “unprepared” characteristics. Knowing this, maybe it’s not the millennials who are not prepared to enter to the workforce, but the workforce which is not prepared for the millennials with their new and innovative ideas. Maybe the workforce needs to adapt to the changing generation and get rid of its rigid rules before putting the blame onto this booming generation.

After reading the More Similar Than You Think” blog post, I was curious to find out how millennial I was. I got a score of 91, and I have got to say that I am proud to be a millennial. Even though, on the surface our generation is seen as the lazy and sloppy ones, I believe that we are a very misunderstood generation, which has a lot of potential and positive characteristics that can improve the world we live in. I hope that in time the corporate recruiters and managers will see these better characteristics, which will help to lift the negative connotation from the word “millennials”. In a world where the change is constant, I believe that the rules and norms of the society should be made more malleable and adapt to the changing generations.

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