“The children now love luxury. They have bad manners, contempt of authority; they show disrespect for elders and love chatter in place of exercise.” This quote was from Socrates’ writings more than 2000 years ago.
The more things change the more perception remains the same. I hear the same things today about our young generation, and I am tired of it. Yes, they respond differently, they have had different experiences shaping their lives; technology, 9/11, inflated housing market.
They are also a product of the boomers who wanted the children to have the things many of them didn’t have growing up; cars, college education, current toys. Most millennials did not lack for what they wanted. They were expected to go to college or university and as a result wound up with an education, but a huge student debt load as well with low paying jobs as a reward for the education.
Millennials tended to be raised to be independent and this carries forward to their view of work. They like to think for themselves and not do something because that is the way it has always been done. They are problem solvers looking for quicker more-efficient ways of doing things. If employers take advantage of this quality, it can be a benefit to the workplace. Sadly, many employers just look at them as lazy, not wanting to fit the position when really, they are not being valued for their potential.
The millennials were not raised to see hierarchy and see everyone as equals. They want to interact with everyone. To some, this translates as having no respect for their elders. ‘Respect’ in many ways has changed over the years and is more something that is earned, and not a ‘right’.
My observation from interviewing students over the past 10 years or so for Rotary programs has left me with the opinion that we are in good hands. In our community we have Rotaract, Interact, and the Young Professionals of Nanaimo (YPN). These are the young adults who are Millennials and their accomplishments are amazing.
These are the forward thinkers of tomorrow and our leaders. Learn to engage them wisely, we will all benefit!
As always, feel free to share this post giving credit to the author.