By the year 2020, millennials will represent 50 percent of the workforce. Millennials are probably one of the hottest subjects talked about by business owners and executives today.
I found this 15-minute Simon Sinek video to be incredibly insightful (he’s the author of Start with Why). As a result of watching the video, I have a completely new attitude. If you don’t have 15 minutes to watch the video, here are Simon’s four main points:
- Parenting: In Simon’s words, there have been too many “failed parenting strategies.” Since they were children, millennials have been told they’re special and can have anything they want (i.e., everyone gets a trophy or medal just for participating). The actual effect of these types of strategies? Low self-esteem, a shattered self-image, and depression.
- Technology: Interacting with Facebook, Twitter, texts, etc. releases a chemical called dopamine, which makes us feel good — similar to the feeling we experience when we drink alcohol.
- Impatience: Millennials grew up getting everything they wanted instantly (Amazon, Netflix, etc.), so they have no patience or appreciation for delayed gratification. The result has been an increase in suicide rates among young people. They don’t know how to deal with disappointment.
- Environment: Unfortunately, many workplaces are more focused on the financial results than the people. Simon says, “It sucks to be you, but leaders have to pick up the slack and build millennials’ confidence.”
Hopefully, this shocking list will cause you to listen and give you pause before jumping to conclusions about the younger generation.
Editorial comment: I find this to be an exciting opportunity for enlightened business owners. If you and your leaders engage millennials using Simon’s advice, your company will soar past your competitors.