Fear of the Millennial:
While not outright, there is a underlying theme that for a period of time seemed like Millennial bashing and generational warfare. It took some time, but finally I realized it is coming from a position of fear of the Millennial – more than anything else.
Many articles have been written about the weaknesses of Millennials, the lack of patience, wanting quick promotion, etc. however, discussion about strength of Millennials are missing or almost always unbalanced. These flaws are shared by people of all generations and maybe unfairly stereotyped to the new generation. All of these articles and discussion did a good job changing the discussion away from one important fact: Millennials are the most educated generation in the history of the planet.
Since the beginning of time prior generations have been fearful about the next generations ability to lead and carry the torch.
The Insurance industry is no different.
The insurance industry is a group of knowledge workers – where better to be an employee or employ a generation of educated employees.
But here lies the confrontation and Fear.
As a peer or competitor to a millennial it is easy to see the Fear or competitive nature. Many are looking to rise in their career and reap the financial benefits, autonomy, and power of a successful career journey. Who would want to compete with someone smarter or with better credentials. Someone without a home, car, or children to care for is a challenging competitor. What a way to create an advantage – point out your competitors weaknesses.
As a superior or manager of someone or a group of people with much better education and background on paper – there is a discomfort and unwillingness to have someone talented nipping at your heels. It’s natural to have this feeling but better ways to be a good leader. There are many ways to embrace this talented group and help it propel your own career.
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Millennials are starting to become the largest generation in the workforce, (and this trend will continue throughout all sectors of the economy), rather than creating a generational war or alienating your younger workers for self preservation – it is time to embrace and empower this generation.
Utilize their strengths and smarts to your advantage while helping them grow in areas of weakness.
For the millennials out there frustrated with reading about your weaknesses, keep in mind some of this comes from a self preservation or fear of millennails bias.
But then again be patient, the time will reveal itself for the time to flex your muscle and strengths.
For the prior generations, less focus on protectionism and more energy to act as true leaders by embracing strengths will maintain your relevance and leave a great legacy.
Written by a Millennial tired of hearing about the flaws of a stereotypical millennial