As Millennials, we are constantly put under scrutiny. From being tech savvy but oblivious to social norms, to needing time off for vacation and volunteer efforts but not being willing to put in extra work at the office (Forbes). Many employers think we are too focused on technology, want to avoid face to face communication, are too ambitious, even narcissistic. Potential employers being fed articles day in and day out about why they should not hire millennials clearly affects how you and I are going to be looked at in the hiring process. While many of these stereotypes are negative, I believe some of them should not be broken, but instead turned around into a positive.
While many employers believe the reliance on technology that many millennials exhibit is a roadblock, I agree with this article that it can facilitate a higher level of productivity(Schwab). Many jobs now allow remote work, or you are working on projects with people in different offices than you. While communication via email, messaging services etc… may seem a bit impersonal, it is the way of the future. Knowing how to properly communicate with these people is an invaluable skill that can not be taught. Given my current job, and overall interest in banking, being tech savvy is completely necessary. Trades are no longer put in by handing someone a piece of paper, and exchanges are all online now. Often at work I am asked by upper management(generally Generation X) how to work different systems. By showing our doubters why some of these thoughts on millennials are not actually a bad thing, we can combat these stereotypes.
I believe the most negative stereotype attached to millennials is that we are lazy and too ambitious, about as bad of a combo as their is. In my work experience so far I have seen one of these is much more true than the other. In banking, most high hour analyst positions are filled by 21-24 year olds, many of which are working 60-80 hours a week. If employers believe 60-80 hours a week is lazy, I’ve picked the wrong industry. By continuing to be persistent and work the hours, this stereotype will continue to deteriorate. I say keep on with the work smarter, not harder approach. This article from Bentley delves into the issue of being too ambitious in more depth. Many millennials are highly educated with internship experience, and will get bored with many low-level entry jobs quickly. This boredom can often lead to a oft-changing career path. Many managers can take this as a lack of loyalty, while it is simply a need for intellectual stimulation. By doing your research on not just industries, but also companies, you can determine what you’re truly passionate about. Finding something you are passionate about is absolutely my biggest piece of advice. If I didn’t truly love what I’m doing at my job I am sure I would sit there on Facebook, until I eventually quit, just continuing to further the stereotype. I believe that this passion is the key in finding your “home company”. By doing something you’re not sure is actually for you, the stereotype will continue to be paired with millennials.
While I may have changed the prompt a bit, I absolutely do believe that many of these negative connotations given to millennials are backwards compliments. I say we as Leeds students continue to do great things and prove that we are worth hiring. Why not just use these to add fuel to the fire?