Every time you read an article on generations, you are likely to learn a new thing about the millennials. Although this is a good thing, it sometimes confuses you when you are unfamiliar with the truth about the millennials because you are likely to accept everything you read about the group. In relation to this fact, it would be crucial to learn a few characteristics about the group together with some facts about the group so that you can tell the difference between the facts and the myths about the millennials.
In the USA, the millennials are the young adults born between 1980 and 2000. Presently, they are the majority of the people joining the working class (Pew Research Center 2). However, one notable thing about this group of people is that they are different from people in other generations that are already working. According to Saxena and Jain, the millennials are making their presence at workplaces felt by forcing companies to re-think their practices so that they can accommodate them (Saxena and Jain 114). As a way of understating their influence at workplaces, it would be important to evaluate their characteristics and the way they influence the world around them. More importantly, it would be important to evaluate the way their lives have been and the effects they are likely to bring with them. My initial opinion on this issue is that the millennials enter the working class just like other generations without influencing it in any way and if they influence it, their influence is insignificant.
With regard to definition, the authors evaluated in this essay differ slightly the way they define millennials. Sandeen defines the millennials as the group of people that were born between 1982 and 2003. Although not quite different from this definition, Saxena and Jain claim that the millennials were born between 1980 and 1995 (Saxena and Jain 114). On the other hand, to evade the controversy surrounding the exact timeframe of the millennials, Eugene and Jinping evaluate the characteristics of the generation as opposed to defining its timeframe (Eugene and Jinping 2).
Looking at the workplaces now, there is no doubt that the millennials are among the majority of the people joining the working class, but one notable thing about this group is that they are different from other generations. According to Saxena and Jain, the millennials are different and they introduce different sets of distinctive values, behaviors and assumptions at workplaces (Saxena and Jain 114). There is no doubt about this issue because their lives back in learning institutions have been different as the authors evaluated in this study demonstrate.
Saxena and Jain claim that the millennials are perceived as bombarding working places and acting unruly because they want everything at workplaces to change overnight. In evaluating this issue, the authors have considered secondary data from books and articles with an aim of establishing how career aspirations for this generation can be managed effectively. The attention of these authors has been on the effects of technology on the lives of this group of people.
In evaluating the same issue, Eugene and Jinping evaluate the characteristics of the millennials and establish that they learn faster, they are better educated and more adaptive than other generations. Although these authors approach this issue from a slightly different perspective from the one applied by Saxena and Jain, their position is the same because they claim that leaders in Singaporean armed force should acknowledge the differences between the groups that serve in the army. The most outstanding issue about the millennials is that they are in one way or the other influencing the way things are done in the Singaporean armed force.
With regard to differences, Eugene and Jinping claim that the millennials tend to be intolerant of hierarchical structures because they are more educated than their counterparts. Accordingly, those serving in the military force do not follow instructions blindly as their counterparts do. Instead, they demand for reasons before implementing instructions. This aspect translates even to other practices because rather than waiting for so long to be promoted, the millennials believe that they should be promoted as soon as they accomplish major tasks in their places of work. In relation to this issue, Sandeen claims that the millennials are accustomed to this type of life because back in schools they were always on the spotlight whenever they achieved academically (Sandeen 18). Accordingly, they expect recognition in form of promotion any time they make contributions at their places of work.
Although addressing this issue from a different perspective, Saxena and Jain claim that millennials develop their careers by moving from one company to the other if they are dissatisfied with salaries and job positions (Saxena and Jain 116). Apart from this, the millennials appreciate feedback from their seniors. They want to know when they have done things in the right way or even when they have done them in the wrong way. Although this thing might not be applicable to other generations, the millennials appreciate it because throughout their school lives they have been graded and ranked this way.
According to Saxena and Jain, in collaboration with generation X the millennials want to change the working hours. The two authors claim that the two generations want to work from morning to noon, stop for a moment and start working again from 5 p.m. until midnight. What matters to the two generations is what they deliver as opposed to having routine working days (Saxena and Jain 116). With such a mentality, there is no doubt that the millennials are ready to transform the way things are done at workplaces (Brooks Para 10).
In terms of characteristics, the millennials are regarded to be special, sheltered, conventional and high achievers. In addition, they are regarded to be team-oriented, confident and pressured (Yarrow and O’Donnell 14). The most unique characteristic with this generation is that unlike other generations, this generation is better educated, ethnically diverse and more affluent. More importantly, this generation has portrayed unique social habits that other youths in other generations do not portray. In particular, the generation is modesty and focuses much of its attention on teamwork (Keeling 35). Accordingly, if companies are to successfully attract and retain the millennial workers, then they should adjust their employee practices so that they accommodate this group of people. In relation to this issue, Eugene and Jinping recommend that the Singaporean army commander should appreciate the generational differences of the soldiers serving in the army so that he can accommodate the millennials in the army (Eugene and Jinping 1). Saxena and Jain equally recommend the same by asserting that companies should re-strategize their policies so that they can attract and retain this group of people (Saxena and Jain 114).
In terms of similarities, the three main authors evaluated in this paper have focused their attention on the lives of millennials back in school. They have all established that the school lives have influenced significantly the way millennials behave and approach issues at their places of work. Although Sandeen does not focus much of her attention on workplace issues, she establishes that millennials are likely to influence the way things are done at workplaces. According to her, the millennials are likely to embrace technology at workplace than any other group of people, they are likely to embrace teamwork and appreciate feedback. In terms of differences, the authors approach this issue from different perspectives, but their positions on millennial influence at workplaces are the same.
After this inquiry, it has become clear that despite the different approaches applied in addressing the effects of millennials at workplaces, the influence of this group of people is far-reaching and it is expected to transform the places of work. My initial opinion regarding this issue was that millennial workers have not made any significant effects at workplaces because other generations have not been able to do so. However, in contrast to this opinion, I have established that millennial workers have been able to affect many employee practices because of the way they approach employment.
First, I have established that many companies have been forced to review their employee practices so that they can attract and retain this group of people. Second, I have established that these workers move from one company to the other so that they can develop their careers whenever dissatisfied with employment practices. The truth of the matter is that the millennial workers are influencing employment practices and they will continue to do so until such a time employers will acknowledge this fact and adjust accordingly. As a result of this inquiry, my initial opinion regarding the millennials has been broadened in the sense that I have learned more about this generation than I knew before. For this reason, my perception about this generation has been refined.
Brooks, Kim. Is it time to kill the liberal arts degree? 19 June 2011 Web. 2 Oct. 2015 <http://www.salon.com/2011/06/19/time_to_kill_liberal_arts/>
Eugene, Maj, and Jinping Nah. Understanding the millennial generation: developing a more effective workforce for the future SAF. Journal of the Singapore armed forces, 39.1 (2013): 1-9. Print.
Keeling, Sarah. Advising the millennials generation. NACADA journal, 23.1, 2003. Print.
Pew Research Center. Millennials: confident, connected, open to change. Web. 2 Oct. 2015 <http://www.pewsocialtrends.org/files/2010/10/millennials-confident-connected-open-to-change.pdf>
Sandeen, Cathy. Boomers, Xers, and millennials: who are they and what do they really want from continuing higher education? Continuing higher education review, 72 (2008): 11-31. Print.
Saxena, Parul, and Jain Rajiv. Managing career aspirations of generation Y at workplace. International journal of advanced research in computer science and software engineering, 2.7 (2012): 114-118.
Yarrow, Kit, and O’Donnell Jayne. Gen Y is from mercury. Web. 5 Oct. 2015 <http://media.johnwiley.com.au/product_data/excerpt/19/04704009/0470400919.pdf