Generation y, also referred to as the Millennial Generation, Echo Boomers or Net Generation describes the demographic group succeeding generation x (Hira 1). The date of the start and end of this generation has been a matter of speculation with some suggesting that its birth occurred between the mid 1970s and the late 1980s. Some individuals argue that the generation comprises of individuals born in the early 21st century (Hira 1).
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In all definitions, the term Net Generation is specifically used to refer to the age group of individuals born between 1983 and 1988. It is argued that a child born in the early 1980s was mature enough to father an offspring before the beginning of the millennium (Hira 1). Within this period, it is quoted that the US Census Bureau referred to this generation as Echo Boomers since it brought along a drastic increase in the birth rates from the early 1980s to the late 1990s (Hira 1).
The generation y attributes varied based on the region, economic and communal conditions. However, one autonomous attribute concerning this generation is the extensive use and familiarity with modern technologies, media, and communications. In the political arena, the generation witnessed an increase in neoliberal advancements.
A Similar approach was also realized in the economic sectors although their effects on the environment are unclear. Overtime, there has been a great deal of facts and misinformation in the media regarding generation y with newspapers, journals and books focusing more on the generation than any other generation.
Background of generation Y
In the media fraternity, the tem generation y initially appeared during the onset of the early 1990s (Maxwell 1). The term was a succeeding term to generation x. Generation x specifically comprises of individuals born between the early 1960s and the late 1970s.
This generation can be said to have witnessed the cold war and contributed to the rise of technology and the internet (Maxwell 1). The end of generation x in the late 1970s paved way for generation y that comprises of more than half of the world’s population currently. This generation is considered to be in the youthful stage of life.
Characteristics of generation y
In an attempt to define generation y, the media has come up with several attributes distinguishing the generation from other generations. Currently, the bulk of the generation y individuals are in their 20s. They are just joining the workforce (Kane 1).
With a population of up to 70 million, they are the fastest growing group in any organization’s workforce. As companies and Industries compete for the available talent, employers cannot ignore the generation’s needs and talents. The generation’s characteristics are distinct from other generations in a number of ways (Kane 1).
Generation y can be considered tech-savvy as its members grew up in an era of new technologies. The group heavily relies on technology to perform daily tasks (Kane 1). Armed with sophisticated gadgets, phones and laptops, the generation is considered as best suited to tackle the current tech-savvy issues in the workplace (Kane 1). Another major attribute of this generation is its form and means of communication.
Unlike generation x, which preferred face-face communication, the group fancies e-mail and text –messaging (Kane 1). Online technologies such as online learning, marketing and telecommuting techniques are more preferred by the group as compared to generation x. Similarly, generation y professionals are able to operate with flexible work schedules, work better and receive huge earnings from their fewer billable hours (Kane 1).
In my opinion, the media’s description of the group is valid as market research indicates that most buyers of modern electronics and technologies are the persons between the ages of 20 and 30 years. This age group comprises of the generation y individuals (Kane 1).
As the media asserts, generation y parents can be considered as individuals who never compromise on the previous generation’s mistakes while bringing up their children (Kane 1). Thus, the generation can be considered as confident, determined and goal-oriented unlike generation x. In the workforce, the generation has high expectations, confront new challenges, and act and ask questions with authority.
Unlike generation x, individuals belonging to generation y are known to have changed workplaces more often (Kane 1). However, in my opinion I disagree with the media views describing the generation as more goal oriented. In the contemporary society, generation x members can be considered to be more focused on their achievements than generation y. Thus, the media’s perception is not entirely through on this generation.
The media suggests that generation y spent its early years preoccupied with team sports and numerous group activities. In this regard, individuals in this group have grown up to become people who value cooperation in their daily activities. Unlike other past generations, the generation can be considered more loyal, committed and team oriented (Kane 1).
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In my view, the media’s attributes on generation y regarding cooperation and teamwork is true. Evidenced by the continuous involvement of the generation in team buildings and social networking, the group can be considered more team-oriented than any other generation.
Children belonging to generation y have experienced a more diverse society than any other generation. The society has increased its multicultural values altering the traditional family believes and values. As a result, the generation and their families have witness several sexual alignments in the society. In the early 1980s, at the birth of the generation, homophobia was rampant in the American society (Kane 1).
On the contrary, today’s society is less opposed to the homosexual behaviors. This is because of the increased number of less conservative and diverse generation y individuals in the society. Researchers have noted that the greatest achievement brought about by this generation in the American society is the diversification of American cultures (Kane 1).
The generation has overturned the older generations’ believes as it has redefined its own cultural styles, permissions and linguistics. In its lifestyles behaviors, the generation has appeared to be more tolerant to cohabitation, single parenting and comprehensive families unlike generation x. Similarly, in the political arena, generation y has proved to be more democratic and liberal than the past generations (Hira 1).
To hold up to the media’s views, I do think the generation diversity is undoubted. This is true because the generation’s lifestyle is unique and assorted unlike any other generation indicating its diversity.
Social evolution for generation y
Generation y individuals are responsible for the global evolution and spread of information technology (Ponce 1). With the drastic social media evolution, technology has become part of the daily activities. Businesses and other related workforce have undergone a major restructuring in order to position themselves at the competitive edge (Ponce 1).
In the workforce, generation y has facilitated communication and networking through mediums like Facebook, Twitter and other social channels of communication. Challenging the use of the old means of communication, and appreciating and accepting the generation’s technologies, ideas, and concepts will significantly enhance companies’ workforce (Ponce 1).
Currently, companies that have adopted the generation’s social tools and concepts have a greater chance of gaining new knowledge, enhance teamwork, save time, communicate, and overcome information gaps (Ponce 1). The generation’s attitude coupled with its creativity and ambitiousness has revolutionized the workplace. Therefore, I consider the media’s analysis on the contribution of this group to be valid.
Similarly, in my view, through the evolution of the social media instigated by generation y, business ventures have had improved productivity coupled with efficient workforce. As seen from the human resource shift to social media as a tool for recruiting generation y workers, the social media is a successful and innovative product of this generation (“Interview Questions” 1.)
In my opinion, the media’s definition of generation y is appropriate. This is because the media’s method of specifically distinguishing this generation from other generations is fully substantiated (Joella 1). Thus, one can easily identify and distinguish a generation y individual from other generations.
Due to its current immense contribution in various sectors ranging from economic to technological sectors, the group’s contribution is undoubted. Thus, it is appropriate for companies and business ventures to allow the generation y labor force into their premises if they want to remain viable and increase productivity in the current market system.
Joella, Annabelle. “English Investigative Journalism: Newspaper Articles: Gen Y more gracious than Gen X: Survey AND More giving to charity from the grave.” English Investigative Journalism. Version 1. no publisher, 2012. Web.
Hira, Nadira A. “Generation Y – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.” Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. wikipedia. Web.
“Interview Questions & Excellent Sample Responses: 97-104.” Quintessential Careers: College, Careers, and Jobs Guide. no publisher. Web.
Kane, Sally. “Generation Y – Characteristics of Generation Y.” Legal Careers – A Guide to Legal Careers and Law Enforcement Careers. Version 1. no publisher. Web.
Maxwell, Kerry. “Generation Y – definition of Generation Y, Gen Y, BuzzWord from Macmillan Dictionary.” Macmillan Dictionary and Thesaurus: Free English Dictionary Online. Version 1. macmillan, 2010. Web.
Ponce , Sandra. ” The Social Evolution for Generation Y.” Social Business News: Insights, Analysis and Opinions about the Social Organization. Version 1. no publisher, 2012. Web.