Working with Millennials

29 Sep
World's best entry level employee

World’s best entry level employee

I work with several millennials, and one of them recently shared this Wall Stree Journal article with me. “Older Workers Should Think Young”, it urges. I really don’t know why she shared it with me, because as I read it all I could think was, these young brats need to stop thinking so highly of themselves and learn to listen to their elders.

I have read that millennials are considered to be those between the ages of 18 and 34. Well, I don’t know who came up with this estimate, but I am 32, and I definitely don’t consider myself a millennial. I feel closer to the generation known as Generation X, the kids of the Baby Boomers (my parents boomed late). And the reason why I don’t relate to millennials is that I remember a time before the internet. It’s as simple as that. But I think that there are some characteristics of the Millennial generation that set them apart. Thinking that the world revolves around them is one.

This is the generation that records every waking thought and perception with Instagram, Snapchat, iChat, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and whichever social network will come to replace them. For me social networking is about community and sharing; for the young twenty somethings it’s about me me me. So how does this relate back to the topic of working with millenniala? The WSJ article states that older workers need to learn from the twenty something millennials who surround them at work. Let their hair down, so to speak. But to presume that older, experienced workers need to learn from their colleagues with zero experience is rather arrogant. Yes, maybe older workers aren’t fluent in social media, but I respect professionals with experience, especially those who have managed to make themselves successful and relevant in this age of youth-obsessed work culture. If an older worker is still around at your place of work, don’t presume to know better than them. Listen to older colleagues, and you may learn a thing or two.  Yes, I believe listening to older people can be beneficial. I guess I really am not a millennial after all.

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