Poor Widdle Miwennials

2015trendsreportIt’s here, it’s here, The 2015 Internet Trends Report is here!

You’d think it was a major holiday, as marketers nearly lose their sh&! writing about it. If you follow even a few marketers or agencies on whatever social platform is your go to one, your feed likely exploded this morning with snippets and insights. So who am I to question the trending of the trends, right?

If you want to review it for yourself, and draw your own, informed conclusions, instead of just reading everyone else’s interpretations, analyses, and responses, you can view it here. The KPCB 2015 Internet Trends Report (all 196 pages of it!)

If you want to just get the gist, well, there will be an endless stream of tweets with the individual stats, that should hold the content posting calendars for marketers everywhere full for months. And of course then there’s all the Linkedin Posts and shares about it.

Or you could just keep reading here, I mean, hell, you’re already here, you’ve clicked and committed, so there’s probably something in here you might find interesting.

I’m not going to focus on the mundane facts and figures that will excite so many about usage, trends, and the next “next big thing”. Stats are stats, and it’s up to the world to sort them out. I’ll focus on those as tools to help me in my work, but this is my blog. I’m going to focus on one area

Everyone’s Favorite Target: Millennials

Yep, I’m going there. Why not, it’s an easy topic. Honestly, I’m going there because I am so sick and tired of my generation bashing the next one it’s making my head explode. Now I have an excuse to write about it. Since it is mentioned in the report, I have an outlet to express my take.

millenialsSlides 109 and 110 give specific insights into the generation and the role they play in our workforce now, if merely by size and focus. They’re important and very enlightening. But you can go there and see them yourself.

The Generational Plight

It’s unfortunate millennials have to defend themselves, but then oh, right, so did GenX and every generation before. It’s a right of passage, as each generation comes of age when the oldest reach maturity in business and the younger ones are garnering attention and giving a “bad rap” that is less about the generation and more about the age.

We all went through our 20s, and lets be honest, those are the millenials referred to in the near constant whining from my own generation. We’re not 25. We won’t ever be again. We’re a little bitter about that, and forever grateful, at the same time. Your generation has something along the order of 4000 times the amount of information and problem solving skills in your entire life upbringing that we ever would. Again, something we’re bitter about, and forever grateful we didn’t have.

We have different outlooks on life because we were raised with different challenges. Yes, you went to school with google, but the papers you found were likely ours. So we have to find a way to co-exist, as our generation did with the previous one. Here’s the thing, we got smacked around just as you are now. We didn’t get to whine for acceptance, we had to earn it. We were as welcomed into the world as warmly as you have been, and lambasted for our approaches and willingness to accept our reality while challenging it in the same way.

How We Got Here

We made you, quite literally. We are your parents. And figuratively, we changed the environment that had been left to us, molded it into what you have now. Just as the generation before us created the world we existed in and managed to navigate through, we did for you. (Stop kvetching, the one we inhereted sucked, too. You’ll fix it, and then get so proud of yourselves, you’ve muck it up. That’s the cycle of life — cue the lion king theme!)

We created a miserable economy that has resulted in the most incredible mortgage rates ever, if you can find a job to become eligible for one. We had two wars and two minor recessions, but we don’t talk about those when we talk about your debt-ridden angst, instead we remain silent because we, OUR generation and the one before us, ALLOWED that recession in out of greed and a willingness to look the other way when crimes were ravaging our society. And because of that we created a labor force raised in a contentious work environment.

We demanded more with less, and for some very strange reason, are a little put out that you responded by giving more with less, and now expect it as well. Go figure.

We’ll Like You More When You Grow Up

Heck, we only started to like our own selves when we grew up!

So stop whining. We did the same thing. It doesn’t work. No, you won’t get a trophy or a gold star, but chances are, you don’t want one anyway, since you have an entire room filled with them now. Now, heaven forbid, you want something of value and worth, like, say, a purpose. How dare you.

I like millennials in the workforce, if they’re good. Just as I do with any member of any generation. If you don’t have an A game, I don’t care what generation you’re in, life is too fast paced to deal with that.