The Millennials are Coming

posted Mike McCrary 9/22/2015 in General

The Millennials are Coming

Like clouds forming on the horizon, forecasters have been suggesting what the coming millennials are going to do to our society, economy, and way of life.  It might not be so bad.  This group, born between 1976 and 2001, boasts a population of more than 80 million according to the U.S. Census Bureau. By 2020, over half of the American workforce will be comprised of individuals from this generation. (Tweet thisTweet this.) So what?

Many businesses, including Lincoln Savings Bank, are giving consideration to what this means both in terms of what they will want as customers as well as how they will be as employees.

When a large population bubble rolls through, it brings with it a lot of things.  Their thoughts, beliefs, habits, and world-view will have an opportunity to shape our world politically, socially, and economically.  So, this group is worth a look.  Consider how their thoughts must have been shaped by the 9-11 terror attacks, and in 2008 at the beginning of the Great Recession.  Many of the structures and ideals that were the foundation of previous generations were disrupted.  They’ve seen an economic shift from manufacturing to technology and communication.  The workplace is slowly evolving as well.  More opportunities for collaboration in open work environments, and a focus on start-ups and entrepreneurialism have formed.

Not just with millenials, but in business generally, traditional hierarchies and paths to success are transforming.  Consider launching a product 20 years ago.  One would have to have a lot of resource and backing to develop, manufacture, market, and deliver their offering.  Those companies entrenched in and in control of those structures were rewarded with success.  Today, virtually any connected individual has the world as his or her stage, and can communicate in real-time with as broad an audience as they can muster.  The globalization of companies has shifted to the globalization of individuals.

So sure, the millennials are indeed coming.  As is the case with any generation, that will bring a lot of new opportunities.  True, this particular generation may have been raised with a degree of entitlement, but with that also comes an audacity to try, fail, and try harder next time.  Why not?  Anything is possible after all.  In addition, they’ll walk into the workforce with skill sets native to them that the traditional office struggles to support.   IT departments won’t be transitioning staff from green-screens to WYSIWYG, the new employees will come through the door armed with more tech than the typical office had 15 years ago. 

The next time you’re walking down the street and see a “kid” approaching, fair-trade, organic latte in one hand and their face planted in the mobile device in the other, give them a smile and a little room.  They may be developing the next big thing.

Lincoln Savings Bank, Member FDIC.
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