It’s all over the news. Millennials have just become the largest age group in the workforce. For Direct Selling, like other industries, this means it’s time to pay attention to what this age group is all about and how they are shaping the channel.
Who Are the Millennials
Millennials range in age from 19 to 35 and were born between the years of 1981 and 1997. They have more college and credit card debt than any previous generation or they will.
According to The Center for Generational Kinetics, a research institution, millennials at the upper end of their age bracket fall into two categories: those who are aiming to reach all the traditional markers of adulthood – a house, children, a steady job – and those who are defining adulthood on their own terms.
Conditioned to life in front of a screen, they prefer receiving their information visually. They also communicate differently than previous generations. Texting is the most preferred method, while email and social media come in a close second and third.
Millennials expect and by all accounts flourish when there is a level of fluidity to their work, opportunities to be creative, a chance to share new ideas and try them out.
What Are They Looking for at Work
Survey after survey reports that Millennials are most interested in flexibility; however, it is important to remember that this flexibility goes beyond scheduling. While important, flexibility also refers to a level of open-mindedness. Millennials expect and by all accounts flourish when there is a level of fluidity to their work, opportunities to be creative, a chance to share new ideas and try them out.
They also expect technology to part of their work life. Most expect to use their personal cell phone to do work anywhere and anytime that suits them. They expect an employer to have the technology in place that allows them to do so and communicate whenever and however they want to with their coworkers, clients or customers.
They are socially aware and active, meaning social issues and causes are expected to be part of any company worthy of their attention and effort.
They also expect a company to have more than profit as its bottom line. They are socially aware and active, meaning social issues and causes are expected to be part of any company worthy of their attention and effort. Companies with strong CSR programs or those with a social issue as part of their mission statement will be more attractive than those without.
What Do They Want as a Customer
Like everyone else, Millennials are looking for good quality at an affordable price. The debt they shoulder makes it even more appealing and makes them even more discerning as shoppers. What is clear though, is that while they are careful with their money, they do spend it. Most items tend to be useful, multi-purpose, environmentally friendly and somehow related to health rather than frivolous, single-purpose products.
What is clear though, is that while they are careful with their money, they do spend it.
The fact, too, that they are purported to be the most marketed-to-generation means they have a keen eye for tricks of the trade. They tend to prefer sales pitches that are more about helping them find what they want as quickly as possible and moving on to the next thing. More of their time shopping is spent texting friends to help them decide on the blue one or the red one rather than whether or not they should purchase the item in the first place.
Why Do They Matter
Figures vary, but as children of the Baby Boomers and Gen Xers, some argue that Millennials stand to inherit sizeable incomes. However, what perhaps matters most to today’s business leaders is their potential as next generation of leaders. Attracting them, bringing them on board and harnessing their talents to build a secure and sustainable future is the best way forward.
Photo by Thoroughly Reviewed