4 Misconceptions about Millennial Workers

By Kaitlin Hurtado on December 13, 2017

With so many millennials entering the workforce after college, plenty of information about said millennials can be collected from fellow coworkers and the internet. The information can be factual or completely false, getting your hopes up when it comes to working with millennials or leaving you dreading working with a millennial new hire. While some things you hear can be true, many “facts” can be false or biased.  Here are some popular misconceptions about millennial workers.

via Pixabay

Millennial workers expect too much – they are unrealistic

It may be old-fashioned to think that just because millennials grew up in a different time that they are not used to hardships and are unrealistic when it comes to what they expect out of a job, but the attitude toward millennials does still occur.

Just like with any group of people, all millennials have grown up differently. Yes, one worker may have had help from another coworker due to family or school connections, but another could have gotten into their position through their own work. Everyone has a different journey to get to the position where they are at, just like you. Casting off millennial workers just because of what generation they belong to is unnecessary, but prevails for many.

For some, it’s easy to think that millennials are unrealistic when they “grew up with so much at their fingertips” and that they are going to be demanding when it comes to their job. They’ll ask for more vacation time, more ideal hours, higher pay, etc. However, millennial workers can be seen as any other worker. They know how difficult it is to get a job position, and once they get a position they will want both financial and job security.

They will be more desperate for their job stability instead of securing the ideal desk or vacation time. With it being so difficult to secure a job in the field they want, many millennials will take as close as they can get to a job position they want, as long as it offers them job stability.

Of course, plenty of vacation time and higher pay is appealing to millennials, but it’s something that is appealing to nearly every worker. Associating millennials with unrealistic job standards is common, but not factual as wanting to get the most out of a position isn’t something that is exclusive to millennial workers.

Millennial workers are stubborn and aren’t willing to adapt to change

Millennials are often thought to be too-opinionated or stubborn when it comes to their work, making it hard to work with them. However, millennials understand the importance of adapting to a job and its needs.

Think about it this way – millennials have grown up with technology, from new phone models to new gaming systems. They were able to witness these changes, learn how they worked, and were able to adapt to each one. Likewise, millennials are ready to embrace change in order to function better at work. They are willing to adapt their skill set as needed for the job.

Millennials know when change is needed for the job and are able to perform when change is needed. In The Economist’s poll of 5,000 workers, “41% of millennials agreed that employees should do what their manager tells them, even when they can’t find a reason for it.” In comparison, 30% of baby-boomers and 30% of members of generation X said the same thing.

Millennial workers are not loyal to their employers 

Many think that millennial workers will chase after any opportunity, even if they are already at a secure job position. This is untrue as older generations are more likely to leave their company more often than millennial workers.

In today’s work force, three percent of workers ages 22 to 29 change jobs monthly, while four percent did so in the 90s. This reflects the notion of a millennial workforce that is career-driven and seeking long-term employment. Rather than jumping from company to company, they are more likely to remain with the same company and climb ranks when they seek a leadership position in the company.

Millennial workers are all play and no work 

The most common misconception about millennials is that they are lazy and unmotivated due to their constant use and reliance on technology. However, this is completely not the case.

What people may think makes millennials entitled and/or lazy, like technology, can make them a better worker. Their “constant” use of technology will help them excel in the workforce. They are able to network and contact coworkers and clients on a multitude of platforms. They are able to know what software to use and how to use it. By being so in touch with technology, millennials are often more efficient in the workforce.

Their use of technology also makes them more “safe” as they are able to put a distinction between private, personal lives on social media platforms and professional work on platforms to enhance their work ethic and performance, like being able to reach out to clients through platforms like LinkedIn.

By Kaitlin Hurtado

Uloop Writer
UC Irvine
Hello! I'm Kaitlin, a second year Literary Journalism major at UC Irvine. I'm a writer on Uloop's national team and a campus editor for UCI.

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