Hold onto your hats! Millennials are taking over, which means that people from other generations are going to have to stop bitching about the youngs for a second and figure out how to welcome their new corporate overlords. Time has some suggestions:
“Determine how your millennial boss prefers to communicate,” Dorsey says. For instance, maybe they hardly ever check voicemail, but they might be quick to respond via online chat or text message. Be prepared to hustle. “The day-to-day work at a Generation Y–led business is very intense and fast,” says Arvind Jay Dixit, CEO and founder of social-media platform Bubblews. Be flexible — you might be expected to jump into a variety of roles and do a wide variety of tasks, Dixit says. It might sound daunting, but it can pay real dividends for your career. “This keeps workers on their toes and motivated because they feel they have power to be able to influence decisions and strategy across the board,” he says. Sharpen your social (media) skills. “Millennials expect to build a brand on various social platforms and be ‘liked’ in volume,” says Michelle Dennedy, vice president and chief privacy officer at McAfee Inc. Since before they were teenagers, millennials have been expressing themselves online and are used to a constant flow of information and communication, she says. Don’t try to be their BFF. “What we see is that employees struggle more in a job as they become friends with a millennial boss outside of work,” Dorsey says. “Keeping it professional is the way to keep the job.” Keep your tech skills up to snuff. “Millennial small-business owners tend to be very technologically savvy and open to digital tools and innovation that will help their business succeed,” says Keri Gohman, head of small-business banking at Capital One.
Have you gotten to be a #GIRLBOSS? What are your tips for having non-millennials — who still expect to do things like, ugh, make phone calls — as employees? Or alternatively I guess how do you like dealing with millennials as your employers?
In the Times’s “Booming” section (about baby boomers) Jim Sollisch has a really sweet essay about his son Max, a 25-year-old singer/songwriter signed to an indie label, who although doesn’t make a ton of money, is living a life he seems to love. Sollisch says that we often measure success by how much money we make but, of course, there’s much more to it than that:
What my friends don’t know is how to measure any of this on the only scale most of us have. You know, the one the I.R.S. uses. And to be honest, I’m not sure how to answer the question either. How successful is Max’s music career? What is a tattoo on the forearm of a 20-something in a medium-size Midwestern state worth? The Eskimos have all those words for snow, and it seems the only language we have for expressing success is numeric. It may be a universal language, but it’s an impoverished one. Maybe we need a word for “never having to sit in a meeting where someone reads long power point slides out loud.” Maybe we should have an expression that captures the level of success you’ve achieved when you do exactly what you love every day.
Max gets up when he likes and does what he loves. He avoids most of the things that most of us numerically successful people complain about all the time: racing from one unreasonable deadline to the next, sitting in unproductive meetings and watching simple things made complicated by committees. And he doesn’t want for much, largely because he’s smart enough to know that the only way to be rich is to want little. He takes no money from his parents. If he doesn’t make enough from a particular tour to cover the next few months, he gets jobs substitute teaching. Somehow he manages to save a little money.
Sollisch still worries what his son will do if his music career doesn’t work out (because dads worry about their children), but when he looks at his son, he believes that Max’s success is “off the charts.”
Goldman Sachs and Teen Vogue partnered to do a HOLISTIC STUDY of millennials’ favorite brands because “[millennials] have no mortgage, kids or families. That means more dollars to spend.” I’m not sure that’s QUITE how it works, but ok! Millenials like Forever 21, the study found.
Portland Monthly has an interview
with Kelly Williams Brown, who recently penned a book titled Adulting: How to Become a Grown-Up in 468 Easy(ish) Steps
, and will be doing a book launch at Housing Works on Thursday
(Billfold pal Lindsey Weber will also be there). I'd also like to propose "formal Fridays" where we all wear cocktail attire to work.