Think you know everything about millennials? Think again. As millennials complete their full assimilation into the workforce, their generation continues to grow and change.
Here’s what millennials have been up to lately.
1. Millennials bust myths about themselves
Adweek reports on 9GAG’s latest Millennial Black Paper, which analyzed the results of an extensive “Would you rather?”-style survey taken by approximately 135,000 people between the ages of 18 and 34 from nearly 200 countries.
The results were surprising. The generation is often considered desperate for unearned praise, yet 69% of American millennials said they’d rather be smart and unappreciated than average intelligence yet showered with approval.
And though millennials are stereotyped as being addicted to the instant approval and “fake” relationships of social media, an overwhelming 95% said they’d rather gain 10 friends in real life than 10,000 followers on Twitter or Instagram.
Check out more misconception-busters in the infographic below.
2. Millennials agree on some things — but not everything
One other interesting result of the Millennial Black Paper—millennials don’t agree on everything. Whether it’s politics, world issues, or personal values, millennials hold diverse opinions.
In two interesting examples, survey respondents were split nearly 50/50 on the questions “Would you rather have an easy job working for someone else, or work for yourself but work incredibly hard?” and “Would you rather give up the internet or sex?”
Like every generation that’s come before, millennials are not one-size-fits-all. Be careful not to lump all of your millennial employees or job candidates into one bucket—they’re individuals with unique backgrounds, experiences and worldviews.
3. Millennials struggle with mental health
It’s no surprise that millennials face mental health challenges. Their generation faces higher debt, lower earnings, and more social isolation than generations past.
Forbes reports that one in five millennials suffer from depression:
“One in five. Look around the conference room during a meeting or down your millennial-inspired open concept floor plan. There are plenty of employees around you that are silently facing the private and public struggle that comes with mental illness.”
Millennial employees—and all employees—benefit greatly from accessible mental health services, mental health days, and workplace leaders who take mental health problems seriously.
4. Millennials make great mentors
In the latest millennial trend, younger employees are being tapped to tutor older employees on everything from marketing to social media to emojis.
In this reverse mentoring scenario, both parties come out ahead. Younger employees build valuable relationships with executives, and executives get valuable guidance from younger employees.
As The New York Times reports:
“Many of the new reverse mentoring arrangements include lessons on new technology and emerging market trends. Gerald L. Hassell, 65, the chairman of Bank of New York Mellon, asked his millennial mentor, Darah Kirstein, a 32-year-old vice president at the bank, to help him streamline the information he got from the internet.”
“She set him up on Tweetdeck, a Twitter app that allows for custom filters, and installed Flipboard, a digital magazine app, on his iPad. Eventually, Mr. Hassell began asking Ms. Kirstein for her thoughts on the direction of the company, and she became a trusted sounding board.”
Looking for your next great hire? Post your job listing on Mediabistro to reach millennials, Gen X, Baby Boomers, and even Gen Z.