Generation Y - Essay

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Getting to Know Generation Y
February 18, 2011

Getting to Know Generation Y
Who are they? Do you get them? You may have one or two living in your home or working with you at work. Society calls them Generation Y. They sometimes referred to as Millennial, Echo Boomers, Internet Generation, Igen and Net Generations. They were born between 1980’s and 2000. (Welcome to Generation Y)

Generation Y, are the children of the Baby Boomers and Generation X parents. They are quite different from pervious generations. They have become the new species. The have the same basic wants as any generation, food, shelter, a sense of belonging and a purpose but in a completely different way. (Rati, 2008) Generation Y is known as the “entitlement” generation. They are a generation who is used to getting a lot of attention. They like irony, humor and they want you to listen to what they have to say. (Grace, 2010) Generation Y’s are also strong-willed, passionate, independent, technology savvy, free spirited and optimistic. They are currently 81 million strong, surpassing the baby boomer generation and make up 25 percent of the United States population. (Welcome to Generation Y). They are also the fastest growing segment in today’s workforce and the toughest generation yet. Today we have a generation mixture of baby boomers, generation X and generation Y all working and living together.

So how do we communicate and relate to a Generation Y? The Generation Yers are the first generation exposed to computers and technology since birth. (Martin, 2010) They only communicate through texting, social websites, internet and email. They enjoy playing video games on their Xbox, Playstations, and only shop online. Unfortunately, because of this many lack the necessary social skills to communicate with other generations. According to professional consultant and CEO of inGiNuity Ginny Carroll, communicating with the youngest generation just means becoming technologically savvy. She recommends that members of more seasoned generations should join Facebook, LinkedIn© and Twitter© and get their hands dirty with all the new technology available. (Brickley, 2009)

In order to connect or relate to a Generation Y, there are a few expectations they have of anyone. They like the other generations to get to know who they are and not assume the worst. They want you to be able to build rapport and establish a connection with their hearts, and always tell them the truth. It is important that you ask them questions, listen to them and let them tell you exactly what they want. It is important for you to invest your time, energy and care with this new species by demonstrating the personal touch. Generation Yers do not want to play safe and will not conform. They are bold, forthcoming and are risk-takers—they do not just think outside the box, they actually live there. (Rati, 2008)

Even though it may be hard to relate or even communicate with the Generation Y, it is important to understand they are our generation of today. They bring a different meaning to life and its expectations. As a society, we must love them, enjoy them, listen to them and learn from them.

The Generational Mix

Baby Boomers| Generation X| Generation Y|
Born between 1948–1964 (42-60 years old)

Committed to working and saving hard

Have a “save first” attitude

Stockpile for a rainy day

Like leadership guidance in a work environment

Prefer authority and rules

Like a steady pace and consistency

Promotion at work is earned, not given

Loyal, long-term employees

Married young

Like stability, tend to struggle with change

May find technology overwhelming

May feel the world is too fast

Watched television and played records

Used pay phones

May view Gen Y as slap-dash, impolite and disrespectful| Born between 1965–1979 (27-41 years old)

Motivated by environment

Want contribution and to add value

Need to be well-informed...
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