This post originally appeared on Linkedin on June 14, 2014
I fall into space between the Generation X crowd and the Generation Y or Millennial crowd. Born in 1981, I remember before computers were mainstream. I had a Commadore 64, a 286, a 386, a Pentium. I remember doing Web design on a 56k modem, God that was slow. I remember only having over the air channels 3, 6, 10, 12, 17, 29 and 57. But still I’m technically part of a generation, the Millennial, who many don’t remember much of what I do. Because of this I feel that it is my duty to advocate for them and show how they can’t be ignored and how they should have every chance to shine.
To many, Millennials are viewed as lazy, entitled, and scattered, etc. For some this might be true. But for many of us the adjectives of creative, entrepreneurial, out-of-the-box thinkers fit better.
Many Millennials, myself included, left college to a really depressed job market. So we did what we could to make our way.
If you live in a metropolitan area like Philadelphia, like I do, you probably see a lot of small technology and even traditional businesses sprouting up with none other than Millennials at the helm. This is their free and entrepreneurial spirit at work. They don’t wait for a job to come to them. They create the job.
The difference between Millennials and the generations before them is that they’ve grown up with technology that has changed the world. They don’t remember a time before computers. Heck, many of them don’t know before the iPad. Because of this, using these tools comes naturally and what develops is often something great.
Even with all the positives about Millennials, many employers don’t know how to best handle and use Millennials to their true potential. Many companies still lock-down social networks and have restrictive policies that many Millennials don’t like to conform to. These companies need to embrace this generation and figure out the best way to utilize their talents.
Companies need to be open to change and realize that Millennials are not pencil pushers. They are so much more. And if they are given the chance to shine, many will truly impress.
So, what do I suggest to companies? Give your young workforce a chance to shine. Bring them into higher levels of the company. You’ll find yourself pleasantly surprised.
And guess what, the next generation, Generation Z, is going to be even more wired than the Millennials. Just wait.
Seth Goldstein is an Internet marketer based in the Philadelphia-Metro area. He can be reached at LinkedIn@gmwd.us. Seth has more than 35k people following him on Google+ and is an ambassador for Google+. You can find out more about Seth at his Google+ profile and here on LinkedIn.