I have a special relationship with my local university as I spend every spring break in Haiti with about twenty students. I live with these millenials, for a week or so, in fairly rough conditions. It’s not for the faint of heart. In this setting, even if we try to hide it, our worst character traits cannot be hidden for long. The students see my lightweight diet coke addiction, and I quickly notice these 5 things about millenials:
1. They are much more flexible than me. I struggle with changes in plans, they roll with it.
2. They buy quality over quantity. I see it in their shoe choices, shoes I tend to dismiss as “too expensive”. But here I am on my fourth pair of crummy sandals and they are still rocking the Tevas from a decade ago.
3. They truly care about the environment, and are committed to the cause. I recycle at home, when it is uber convenient. I once had a team member pack all the used plastic water bottles in her suitcase to recycle them properly at home.
4. They are not afraid to take career risks. As a new college graduate I couldn’t wait to get hired by a big company to take care of me. Now, I see lots of opportunity, but it’s taken a twenty-year career. I envy their ability to live low and pursue their dreams early in life.
5. They are adventurous and value experiences over things. This is a lesson I’ve been learning for many years, but I didn’t get it when I was their age.
These things irritate me, because I wish I had this wisdom when I was young. Yes, I tried to suck you in with that title, I too have read all the articles about these terrible millenials and I’m not in that camp anymore. Let’s quit bashing the next generation and build them up instead!
“When I was your age I walked uphill both ways in the snow…”
Enough already! There is work to be done that takes all of us- old, young and in between. Hut Outreach is honored to have old and wise supporters working alongside young energy and talent.