The word millennials typically refer to members of the generation group which were born from the early 1980s to the early 2000s. They are also known as Generation Me, Generation Y and the Echo Boomers. They are potentially the offspring of the baby-booming years as the number of births recorded between the early 80s and mid 90s showed a significant increase.
San Diego State University psychologist Jean Twenge describes how each generation has a type of characteristic or trait they share. She portrays the millennials as having positive personalities that are confident and assertive, yet also labels them as being ‘more miserable than ever before’!
What Are the Typical Millennial Traits?
Millennials are believed to have several similar traits that separate them from any other generation. The stereotypes are reported to be sheltered, conventional, confident, team-orientated and high achievers. Their perhaps more negative characteristics include the potential of having a strong feeling of entitlement. This creates a somewhat narcissistic generation, whose personalities have a suggested selfishness, a sense of superiority and a hint that they will typically put themselves first – hence the label ‘Generation Me’. However, perhaps these stereotypical personality traits will hold them in high regard and the believers will be achievers in the high-flying society of professionalism. Based on these typical characteristics, what do we expect of millennials?
The technology boom that has catapulted society into a virtual world, has maybe taught millennials that their whole life can be controlled and conducted at the touch of a button. Yet, because millennials are high-fliers, their passion to achieve and succeed will probably create one of the most powerful generations. They are absorbed by gaming, being the biggest generation and users in gaming consoles, the largest community of on-line gamers, often challenging themselves and their peers to win cash or just be victorious at online games. Indeed, the millennials are even taking part in and reinventing casino games, including more traditional offerings such as bingo and on-line slot games. It seems that the urge to win allows this generation to constantly seek new arenas in which to compete. In the case of cash games like bingo, it also gives them the satisfaction in not only achieving but increasing their bank balance from their winnings, and they play it online rather than in bingo halls, as the previous generations did. In fact, it’s fitting that they’re the generation that caused the emergence of eSports – video games as a spectator sport.
Authority in The Workplace
Millennials have grown up with strong views about equality, so they may feel uncomfortable in the workplace and do not easily accept a superior giving them orders. Remember, technology has been at their fingertips, and allows them to research and resolve issues quickly. Millennials will therefore sometimes struggle with the time that it can take to resolve work issues, or work hard to climb the ladder to reach their goals. They may find it difficult to accept an authority, but encouraging their go-getter attitude and the desire to highly achieve, could on the flip side be a very positive attribute for the workplace.
Outdoor Life & Nature
“Travel” (CC BY 2.0) by Moyan_Brenn
Millennials may be the children of technology and are therefore expected to be an ‘indoor’ type of generation, but many of them who embrace nature and outdoor life. It is thought that perhaps Generation Me has adopted an unpredictable interest in the outdoors because of their enthusiasm for living life to the full. However, it is perhaps arguable that this could be for admiration from their fellow peers, as they do seem to have a distinct desire to travel and see the world. Perhaps their hearts lie more in the wish to visit big cities with comfortable places to stay, rather than rural outdoor locations (where there could be poor mobile network coverage). However, most of them seem to have a keen interest in going beyond their comfort zone and want to learn and discover parts of the world overseas.
“Children of Paoua” (CC BY 2.0) by hdptcar
Most people would expect millennials to put themselves first, to ensure they have enough money in their bank, decent clothes and a list of achievements under their belts. However, apparently, millennials are one of the most generous generations of our time, often giving away their hard-earned cash to good causes. Not only are they contributing towards charities, but they are actively seeking to volunteer and support causes by offering their time. Many millennials chose to take a gap year before university, to travel the world and offer charity support and volunteering in third world countries.
The Entrepreneurial Generation
While we might expect millennials to want to have everything land on their laps or for achievement in business to be at their fingertips, they are believed to be one of the most entrepreneurial generations. Their drive to succeed, to invent and to make a name for themselves is perhaps one of the most powerful qualities that they possess. We are already seeing so many 20 and 30 year olds with hugely successful businesses and healthy bank balances. They are already revolutionising business and their desire to prosper means the sky is their limit.