With every new generation, there is always conflict with the generation that came before. Across the internet there are a number of websites and articles dedicated to discussing stereotypes of millennials. This is no surprise, as they are the youngest generation entering the work place and are under constant criticism. George Drucker, Partner and President at Crenshaw Communications, had heard many of these rumors before deciding to teach a college level PR class. However, what he saw in his students debunked many of the myths he had heard. As seen in his recent article, millennials have quite a lot going for them. Here are some of the lessons he learned from his work with millennials:
They value substance as long as it’s relevant. Once you establish something they believe is of value, they listen. No closed eyelids, no light snoring. They’re more than willing to commit time and attention when the knowledge is relevant to their upcoming careers and future, — and not just in the financial sense.
They respect experience. Research shows that the rising Millennials have a narrower generation gap with their parents than the Boomers did. My experience is that the students honor and understand experience as long as it’s placed into a context they can understand.
They’re connected and committed socially. They care far more about social change than my own generation. To these young people, social change is more than a marketing strategy or a reputation management tool. The environment, human rights, racial equality – all are part of who they are and what they value. To me, this has implications for the future of workplace culture and ethical decision-making in our industry.
Millennials are different from previous generations, but is that really a bad thing? Sometimes, people are resistant to change regardless of the direction the change is moving towards—even if it is for the better.
Read Drucker’s article about his experience in the classroom here: http://crenshawcomm.com/millennials-know-pr-life/#.VDhAz_nF8l0