I feel lucky. Or naïve. But it seems like I meet a higher percentage of motivated, talented and mature millennials than others do. Maybe I need to thank my recruiting team, or our company in general for creating a brand that is attractive to up and coming professionals.
I know there are a lot of myths about millennials, and some are likely more true than others. But I do not think they are lazy, entitled, or needy. I do not think they come to work expecting to be a CEO within five years. I do not think they want to jump around from company to company.
I do think they want variety, and to learn a broad base of skills. I know they want to work for companies and for leaders who stand for a “bigger purpose.” I do think they are more socially conscious than previous generations.
Millennials, in my mind, are not that different than previous generations: they can be a bit over their skis when thinking about how smart they are; they can be too idealistic and not savvy about office politics or possess enough “street smarts.” But I have hired and interviewed and mentored several young professionals and they seem like they have a great balance of realism (maybe from growing up through the Great Recession) and world-view. I have written about this subject before, most recently I posted some career advice for young folks, which I don’t honestly think would have been too different from advice 20 or 30 years ago: https://rarpin.wordpress.com/2016/02/16/career-advice-to-those-just-starting-out/
I hope the focus on the myths of millennials fade away soon, and we embrace this generation as a potentially powerful addition to the worlds of business, government and service for many years to come. The ones I am around at work and at UNLV and in my personal life give me great hope and optimism for our future.