All Articles Tagged "generation y"
I remember when my younger brother woke up one morning feeling that because he had his driver’s license, he deserved a new car. He first went to my parents and petitioned for his own vehicle. Of course, they looked at him sideways and asked him such reasonable questions as, “Do you plan on getting a job to pay your car insurance?” or “Gas prices are rising. How do you intend to keep gas in the car?” and even, “Your grades aren’t showing that you deserve a car. How do you plan on proving that you are ready to take on this responsibility?”
I suppose my brother didn’t feel like he should have to prove to my parents that he was deserving of his own car. Not only was he convinced that he was deserving of a car but also entitled to one. His next target was our grandmother. After badgering her and going on and on about how much he wanted a car and felt he should have one, she caved and brought him a fairly new BMW.
What should be noted most about this story is not how absurd it was that my grandmother decided to buy my little brother a BMW, but the fact that he truly believed that he was entitled to this car. He was in no position to financially keep the car up, put gas in it or do damn near anything for it, yet he was convinced that because he had his driver’s license, someone was obligated to provide him with his own vehicle. While this story may be a bit on the extreme side, many young adults within this generation seem to share a similar false sense of entitlement when it comes to things in life that should be earned.
I recently had a conversation with one of my classmates who happens to be a seasoned media professional in his forties with many years of industry experience under his belt. In an effort to pick his brain and get an idea of what employers are looking for from new graduates such as myself, I asked him what stands out the most to him when interviewing potential employees. He shared that his biggest problem with recent graduates in the job market is that many of them give off the vibe that says they believe that their potential employer somehow owes them something. “They walk in feeling as if they’re entitled to the job their interviewing for as opposed to realizing that they are competing for it and trying make the best impression.” He also shared that many are not willing to work their way from the bottom up. They come in fresh out of college turning their noses up at the work being offered, expecting to fall into some grandiose position and do all of this glamorous and fun work in their industry when the truth of the matter is that it just doesn’t work that way.
I for one, found his statements difficult to believe considering the state that our economy is currently in and knowing as a recent graduate how challenging it is to find work in your field. However, before I could even argue with him about it, I thought of other young adults like my brother or former classmates who merely made appearances during the semester and barely turned in assigned work, but expected to receive grades worth bragging about once the semester was over. I even thought of former co-workers who happened to fall in my age group who didn’t even put forth an effort to carry their weight as regular employees but felt they should be promoted to supervising positions.
In an interview with the CBS Early Show, Jason Dorsey, author of Y-Size Your Business, shared that in his experience working with millennials and interviewing them, “they would rather be unemployed than to take a job they believe is beneath them.” He also shared that some Gen Y’ers are lazy, but that they also “have a different work preference.” For example, many won’t show up to work on time, but are “willing to stay late. They’re also sending e-mails at 2 am. They just work differently.”
He also urged young adults seeking to enter the work force to take the jobs that they can get because staying unemployed for years and years after college graduation will only make entering the workforce more difficult. “You’ve got to take the jobs you can get now and get the experience, build your network, do these things that give you more options rather than holding out,” says Dorsey.
Do you believe that Generation Y suffer from entitlement mentality or simply just have higher standards?
Check out Jason Dorsey’s discussion of Gen Y in the workplace in a video after the jump…
It started as a hobby, something I snuck away to do every now and then, a little something special just for me. This weekend, my hobby saw me hunkered down into what I’ve dubbed “my writing nook”, the little corner in my apartment in which I spend hours tapping into a computer keyboard, reading the day’s news, and getting a feel for what the world is talking about. Writing, you see, is my side hustle. What I do for pleasure, I also now do for pay. What started as the occasional blog post and short story for friends only is now a second prong in my career, complete with working primarily on nights and weekends, promoting my pieces on social media networks, and the keeping up with the go-go-go of being about my own business. That go-go-go is no different than the grind of a weekday nine-to-five and, lucky for me, both go hand-in-hand with building the skill set I hope will serve me through the trajectory of my career.
I once worked with a girl named Kelly who went as hard in her side hustle as she did in our office. Graphic design was her passion, she said, and the idea that she could turn it into profit (she provided freelance services for many well-known corporations) and add the experience as a bullet point on her resume provided a second wind of motivation. Kelly’s side hustle was a boon for her skill set, and it eventually landed her a full-time gig that more closely resembled her dream than the corporate world did.
It seems that more and more twenty-somethings comprise a Generation-Y workforce that keeps two sets of business cards, one printed for us by our employers and ones we have designed ourselves for the work we do on our own time.
As writer Larissa Faw noted in Forbes Magazine:
Today’s young professionals…aren’t easily categorized. I still can’t figure out what to prioritize on my LinkedIn profile. I am a journalist, marketing consultant, and co-partner for an internet company. All are equally important to my identity.
Perhaps that explains the little twinge I get when someone asks me what I do; I’m always compelled to make sure a person knows all that my career encompasses beyond my weekday title. Faw goes on to indicate that, “This generation of millennial does not identify with one company or career…[T]heir priorities are their own skill set.”
Side hustles are not just the stuff of dream chasing, but also indicators of the economy’s brunt on recent graduates and those looking for full-time work. For many, the extra gig is what makes the student loan payment every month.
Scan your social media profiles and you’re likely to find a friend or follower who is a personal trainer and a life coach and a blogger and a consultant and a web designer and a karaoke DJ and a photographer. Oh, and they’re working on their first novel. Last month, I wrote about being busy for busy’s sake and not being as diligent about having a full, well-rounded life as we are about creating solid careers. The side hustle is not the antithesis of that. It is, instead, a way of allocating our working hours to serve both our employers and our personal passions. It’s also not for a lack of focus. Millennials, it seems, are okay with clocking 40 hours a week at their full-time job and an additional 10-20 hours a week on a job that pays a few bills and brings them closer to their personal goals.
The concept of working for the same company from college graduation until retirement belong to the days of old, it seems. Perhaps the generational boom in professional versatility is due to Generation Y’s unprecedented access to resources that were once only available to corporations. Millennials are the first group to grow up connected, with Internet-capable computers in their classrooms and music available with the click of a mouse. Couple our seemingly in-built affinity for technology with social media, and we can build a worldwide sphere of influence without spending a dime on a marketing campaign.
The same graphic design programs once only affordable to big businesses with big budgets are now accessible to Kelly who can produce professional quality work from home. The aspiring film maker can now film and edit movies on his own and do it inexpensively (and preview the finished product on YouTube). For young professionals, the barriers to entry that once existed are all but extinct. Technology has likely triggered a shifting mindset as well. Our phones, our televisions, our music players and our computers have almost always been customizable. Why not our careers, too?
What’s your side hustle? How do you balance it with your full-time job?
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Although the National Association of Colleges and Employers reported that college grads were receiving higher starting salaries for the first time since 2008, a Forbes report finds these numbers may not be true. The average of $50,034 a year that NACE finds is slowly slipping away and each month, the millennial generation of college graduates is seeing smaller and smaller pay checks.
Forbes reports that researchers with the Economic Policy Institute discovered the average hourly wage for male college grads from 23-29 is down more than 11 percent from 10 years ago to $21.68 in 2011. Although female college grads are seeing a lower drop, with gender wage differences, they’re still losing out big time. Young women are seeing a 7.6 percent decrease from 10 years ago to $18.80.
The report noted the situation of one 28-year-old advertising assistant who still lived with his parents due to his stalled salary. He had starting working in 2007 at $35 and his pay raise only recently jumped past $40,000. A Wall Street Journal report noted that one 2010 college graduate was obligated to take a position for less than $30,000.
It paints a difficult reality for many young workers struggling to work and pay back student loans. Lower salaries leave them with less income to pay down their debts and actively participate in consumer spending.
Despite the lower salaries, many of these millennials are simply relieved to have found work. Pew research observes that 37 percent of 18-29 year olds are still out of work.
There is some good news to the numbers, the report states that the average age-adjusted hourly wage for production and non supervisor positions has risen 3 percent across age and education levels.
You might not know her name or face, but her brand is the future. Arielle Patrice Scott is a 22-year-old powerhouse. Using her undergraduate thesis from the University of California at Berkeley as the foundation, Scott created GenJuice, a network that connects 20-something bloggers with other 20-something bloggers, advertisers, and successful brands. With a re-launch of Genjuice on the horizon and a vision that includes being the creator of the next digital MTV (which she might have already accomplished), Scott stops here to discuss her past, the present, and her amazingly surreal future.
It is well-known that the concept for Genjuice began as an undergraduate thesis. How exactly did that thesis develop?
I used to invite my friends over for these get-togethers. We would meet-up and discuss how to start building personal brands. The meet-ups began to grow, but it wasn’t meant to be much of anything. Eventually, a group of friends and I decided to empower gen Y [generation Y] to become innovative through a national tour.
Two of my friends quit their jobs to go on this tour with me. We had nothing, but we rented a car and set out on this tour. On 10/10/10 we announced what Genjuice was and by then, we had over 100 contributors.
How different is the original concept of GenJuice from what it is now?
Genjuice now is very different than what Genjuice was. Originally, I wanted to build a blog network to help bloggers develop a personal brand. The more traffic the site received, the more revenue would be generated. Now, Genjuice is going to be re-launching in the summer. It is going to be a site that has all of the pop-culture content that is important to a 20-something. Users will be able to get everything they need from fashion to music.
You have built a very successful career on technology and innovation. What inspires you to be innovative?
Empowering generation Y to create good stuff. Inspiring them to go out there and build something. Being able to touch as many people as possible and encouraging and empowering them to create good stuff in that short window of time they have before real life kicks in. Helping the next generation of leaders inspires me to be innovative.