Should You Take Millenials Seriously?

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January 15, 2013 by

As I have explained in past posts part of my responsibilites living in the Vincent & Louise House is to have at least six hours of community service a week. During Fall quarter I had a rough time finding a service site and settled on helping a pre-school class, but what I’ve really wanted to do is volunteer at the local Little Sister’s of the Poor nursing home, but that has unfortunately proved harder said than done.

In the fall I was told the volunteer coordinator at the nursing home had just left her position and they wouldn’t be taking any volunteers until someone new was hired. Well now someone is hired and after multiple calls, unanswered voice-mails and even a visit a response was finally made, but not what I or another roommate who plans to volunteer there wanted to hear. Unfortunately the volunteer coordinator did not believe two college girls would commit to volunteering weekly and would only allow us to attend meal-times until we proved that we are serious about volunteering and they can rely on us to stop by every week.

That got me thinking of a question that I’ve often seen debated in the Opinion section of multiple online news sites, are late Generation Y and Millennials harder workers or more lazy than prior generations in America?

In 2012 Matt Miller contributed to Forbes about this very question in his article, “Why You Should Be Hiring Millennials.” In his argument he counteracts the typical criticism that the Millennial generation (and spanning into the late Generation Y) is more lazy and less ambitous than prior generations. Though every generation goes through this criticism I feel that with the technological boom since the mid 1990s the difference between Millennials and Generation Y citizens is a much larger gap than Generation X and Baby Boomers endured. Though this is strictly my own opinion, Miller makes an interesting argument as to why the upcoming college grads and those in their late teens through 20s are hard workers without having to try too hard.


Maximzing Millennials: The Who, How, and Why of Managing Gen Y

Those born around 1990 and on have grown up with technology, understanding it better than parents and certainly grandparents. Using technology has been part of everyday life as well as embracing the rapid changes into the digital era. So while many may criticize this generation as glued to their phones and computers, it’s these individuals they rely on to be in control of their company’s social media identity, to build their websites and fulfill other duties that have to do with media.

Though I’m not arguing that those in generations past are not hard workers, surely they are, but with a vastly different set of skills than people of my generation have today. Sure there is criticism that technology is gaining too much control over our society and this generation lacks the social skills of generations past (which I can agree with to a certain extent), but we’re working against some pretty steep odds right now. Has anyone noticed how terrible the job market has been, how the cost of living has soared but our paychecks haven’t, or how we’re caught in a national debt crisis? 

Though the volunteering incident doesn’t have to do with the professional workforce I feel it’s another criticism towards the young adults in the U.S. right now not being responsible enough or not being hard workers. So maybe cut us a little slack and we’ll prove to you that we’re serious workers, volunteers, students etc. and are just as reliable as anyone else. At the end of the day we just have a different way of getting the job done.


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