30 Ways Millennials Are Winning
While it’s easy to make fun of millennials for being lazy, entitled, or paying too much for avocado toast, there are actually many things millennials do better than previous generations. Born between 1981 and 1996, millennials are projected to become the largest U.S. adult population group, so it’s no surprise that they will disrupt how things have "always been done."
From changing the workforce for the better to being the most charitable generation, here are 30 ways millennials are winning. Some of these findings may surprise you.
Millennials Are Environmentally Conscious
Millennials, also known as Generation Y, get plenty of bad press. But is it awful that they want to reduce pollution or their carbon footprint? Many millennials believe in climate change. As a result, they drive less and ride public transportation 40 percent more than Baby Boomers and Generation X. If they’re not using local transit, millennials will also consider carpooling.
They’re More Generous
Although other generations believe millennials are lazy, greedy or broke, they’re still the most charitable generation. Generation Y (Gen Y) is more likely to donate money to causes than having the donation deducted from their paychecks. They also enjoy donating goods. But before they give away items to charity, millennials research the foundation to make sure it’s legitimate.
They're Changing the Work Landscape
Gen Y dominates the workforce. By 2025, they’ll take up 75 percent of the job market. Instead of just following the money, millennials prioritize job fulfillment. They’re turning their backs on dead-end jobs and looking for a meaningful career. Employers that offer career growth and challenging work attract more millennials.
Millennials Are Committed to Their Employers
Other generations slam millennials for job-hopping, but they should see the track record for Generation X (anyone born between 1961 and 1981). Millennials stay with their employers longer than Generation X (Gen X) workers did when they were the same age. On average, millennials stick with their jobs between three and six years, while Gen X only stayed at each job for an average of one year.
They Push for a Flexible Working Environment
Millennials value flexibility over a high salary at work. They prefer using laptops over computers at their jobs, so they can easily work from home or remotely. They’re also leaving the traditional 9-5 workday behind. Being able to connect from anywhere at any time means odd work hours.
Millennials Are Better Educated
Millennials are inquisitive. They love to learn and it shows. More than 34 percent of millennials have a bachelor’s degree or higher, compared to 15 percent of the Silent Generation (anyone born between 1925 and 1945) and 29 percent of Gen Xers.
Being Tech-Savvy is a Big Asset
Staying updated on all the new technological trends isn’t easy, but millennials are good at adapting to digital changes. They have plenty of experience from managing their lives with mobile apps and the internet. Being tech-savvy is a highly useful skill for millennials, who can make the workplace more efficient.
Millennials Are Culturally Diverse
Racial and ethnic diversity in the U.S. is growing and they show no signs of stopping because of millennials. Only 51.5 percent of millennials are non-Hispanic white, compared to 84 percent of the Silent Generation.
They Love Public Libraries
Public libraries are not dead; they’re actually thriving. How is that possible in today’s digital world? Believe it or not, millennials value public libraries more than any other generation. According to a Pew Research Center study, 53 percent of millennials went to a public library in the last 12 months, compared to 45 percent of Gen Xers and 43 percent of Boomers.
They Love Dogs
Fewer millennials are having babies, but many of them are adopting fur babies. The younger generation takes the concept of "man’s best friend" to a new extreme. For instance, a TD Ameritrade survey found that 56 percent of millennials are dog owners, and consider their dog as an important part of the family.
Other generations think millennials are lazy, but could it be that they just don’t like working behind a desk or for someone else? Millennials are ambitious go-getters, so they’ll quit their jobs to become entrepreneurs and run their own companies. Just think about it; without millennials, we wouldn’t have Facebook, Wordpress or Spotify.
They Want to Make a Difference
Previous generations allege that millennials are only interested in themselves. However, they actually care about the state of the world. About 61 percent of millennials feel personally responsible to make the world a better place. They participate in social activism efforts like signing petitions, fundraising for causes and spreading awareness about issues.
The Optimistic Generation
Despite dealing with economic and social woes, millennials are more confident and upbeat than generations that came before them. Almost half of millennials believe that the country’s future will get better, compared to 42 percent of Gen Xers and 44 percent of Boomers.
Rewiring the brain sounds like something straight out of science fiction, but millennials have grown up doing just that. Since childhood, millennials have trained their brains to use mobile devices while watching TV and talking to friends at the same time.
Millennials Are More Informed
Older adults claim that millennials spend too much time on social media, laughing at memes and nonsense. Although millennials do look at memes, they’re also reading the news online through Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Reddit and Tumblr. About 88 percent of millennials receive their news from Facebook.
More Civically Engaged
Millennials are highly woke and politically aware. Taking action in nationwide movements, they’ve been part of Occupy Wall Street and Black Lives Matter. They also had a higher voter turnout, changing the political landscape and electing Barack Obama as the first African American president in 2008.
More Aware of Mental Health
As the most stressed, depressed and anxious generation, millennials know plenty about mental health. In the past, talking about mental health was taboo. But millennials want to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health, saying instead that it should be a priority like physical health.
They Want to Better Manage Their Finances
Millennials are known to live frugally, but they’re trying to save money for their future. They’ve realized they need to start saving at a younger age to live comfortably during retirement. According to the financial services firm, Fidelity, 83 percent of Gen Yers contribute to a 401(k).
Millennials are more tolerant than the generations that came before them because they value equality. Support for gay rights is at an all-time high among millennials. In fact, 72 percent of Gen Yers support gay rights, compared to 46 percent of Boomers.
Previous generations make fun of millennials for killing many industries, including beer and cereal. However, Gen Y is actually looking out for their health. They’re eating healthier and exercising more. Drinking beer and smoking are less appealing to them. Millennials have swapped out sugary cereals for foods that are high in fiber, protein and nutrition.
They Still Have Happy Relationships
Just because fewer millennials are getting married, doesn’t mean they’ve quit relationships completely. A happy relationship takes effort. Being a good partner is important to Gen Y, so they’re willing to go to therapy, learn how to communicate effectively and resolve a problem after a fight.
Getting Creative With Fitness
Millennials are known to be health-conscious and exercise frequently, but they aren’t sticking with the typical running routine. There are more fitness options available than in the past. Gen Y fully supports this, changing their routines and trying new workouts. But what do they choose?
Quality Service is King
Millennials have huge spending power. Guess where they’ve decided to spend their money? Quality services. They’ve helped bring better entertainment into the world with giant streaming services, such as Hulu, Netflix and Amazon Prime. Studies found that Gen Y’s favorite genres are drama, reality TV, comedy and documentaries.
Brands With Positive Purposes Are Important
Will these purchases make me feel good and help others? Before buying, 84 percent of millennials will question a brand’s values and ethics. They’re interested in companies that show authenticity. Gen Yers are twice as likely to research a company’s social responsibility statements than Boomers.
They Participate in the Sharing Economy
Although fewer Gen Yers own cars and homes, more of them are contributing to the sharing economy’s growth. The sharing economy provides cheaper goods and services, so it fits well within a millennial’s budget. Ridesharing companies like Uber and Lyft are available in more cities, and are highly popular among Gen Y. Co-working space businesses like WeWork are also a big hit among millennial freelancers and entrepreneurs who wish to work remotely. WeWork currently has 450 locations in 87 cities.
Millennials Prefer Experiences over Materials
Millennials are choosing experiences over things. By creating more unique experiences and contributing to the sharing economy, Gen Y spearheads this trend. As the world is becoming more digitally-focused, ownership is becoming less important. According to studies, Gen Y values experiences more because experiences make them more happy in the long run.
They Choose Their Own Priorities
Previous generations often criticize millennials for not starting a family or owning a home. However, their priorities are very different from older adults. Making your own path is important to millennials. They don’t want to accept the norm that their parents did: go to college, get a job, get married and have children.
Creative and Resourceful
Gen Y gave the internet a makeover, making websites that are visually appealing and easy to use, so it’s no surprise that millennials are creative. From building an app to making vlogs, millennials are taking advantage of their innovative side. If there’s a problem, millennials aren’t afraid to invent something to solve it.
They Honor Authenticity
Millennials love keeping it real and encouraging others to be themselves. Community, family, and creativity in their work are important to them and they’re not willing to compromise these values. This is represented in the socially responsible brands that they choose to buy from and employers that they decide to work with.
Aren’t Afraid to Digitally Detox
There are many types of well-known detoxes, such as a food detox or a skin detox. But have you ever heard of a digital detox? To digitally detox, a person must escape from technology by giving up their smartphones or computers. As the generation known to be addicted to technology, millennials aren’t scared to disconnect from the digital world.