The Changing Face (and Age) of Leadership…

Millennials— born between 1980 and 1995 have overtaken baby boomers as America’s biggest living generation and according to recent studies, Millennials will outpace Baby Boomer’s in the workforce by 2020.  That said, as the generation continues to become the majority of the workforce, how will they change the way business is done?  How can multiple generations come together and build strong relationships for the betterment of an organization?

Knowing what Millennials are looking for in collaborating with co-workers or working with professionals can go a long way in making seamless strides toward generational integration.

When it comes to leadership styles, Millennials want to be transformational leaders who challenge and inspire others with purpose and excitement.  They also want to share the decision making process with followers, making more rigid, autocratic leadership a thing of the past.  So, it seems this “entitled, everybody gets a trophy” generation doesn’t really want the titles or the accolades.  They just want the job to get done—correctly, efficiently, and on time.  Doesn’t matter how it gets done or where the work is completed, as long as it gets completed!  In the workforce they have been called the 24/7 generation.  Have a doctor appointment at 1 pm on a Tuesday?—Go!, Want to go watch your child’s play at school?—Absolutely! As long as your job gets done, do what you need to do, when you need to do it.  The days of being in the office 9-5 everyday are all but gone for this generation.  And with communication as simple as it is today, why not?  Need to reach 5 of your team members—shoot out an email from your phone or maybe a group text.

There’s no doubt that the business climate will be changed by this massive generation, both as leaders of organizations and consumers of goods and services.  While I’m hesitant to consider myself a Millennial for several reasons (mostly the “everybody gets a trophy thing”), even though my birth year is 1982, it’s an exciting time to be a leader.  From being globally integrated, realistic, and collaborative, to media savvy and environmentally conscious, the leadership possibilities are endless for our generation.  We just need to embrace the opportunities and help to reshape some of the “old guard” thinking that was Beta Version 1.0— because let’s face it, we’ve already upgraded to V10.2 since you’ve been reading….


Post Courtesy of: Jacob Cuthbert, Financial Advisor, Waddell & Reed Financial Advisors


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