More Than One Type of Millennial

I recently read an article about how there is more than one type of millennial. Being a millennial myself, I really enjoyed this article because at times I didn’t always feel like I fit into the millennial mold. The article is called, “Don’t Call me a Millennial, I’m an Old Millennial“. I definitely suggest giving it a read if you are a millennial or if you have millennials working for you. 

Defining a Millennial

According to the Census Bureau’s definition, a millennial is someone born between 1982-2000. That’s a pretty big span of years. According to the article mention above, there are both old and young millennials. An “Old Millennial” would be born between 1982-1988 and a “Young Millennial” would be born between 1989-2000. 

I’m a Young Millenial…or am I?

I was born in 1989, which means I’m technically a “Young Millennial”, but I don’t actually identify with that. I like paper. I print things. Ok, I don’t print things that often, but when I do, I remember how great it is to look at things on actual paper, not just a screen. Millennials are allegedly job hoppers, don’t follow a “normal” life trajectory, and are also known as the boomerang generation, because of going back to living with their parents, I’ve been at my current job for four years now, and I think my life trajectory is fairly normal. I moved out when I got married, got married at 24, and haven’t moved back in with my parents yet. And I really don’t plan to! 

But in other ways, I am more like a “Young Millennial”. I love my phone and iPad and always have them near me. The idea of calling someone seems very foreign and even uncomfortable. Can’t I just text instead? When put into a situation where there is no internet access, I feel concerned. How will I know what’s going on in the world? Or at least in my world? I’m probably on the lesser extreme with social media. I only use one social media account, but I check it very often and post things every few days. 

Millennials during the Financial Crisis

The financial crisis hit our area (Silicon Valley) hard. It started at about 2007-2008. I was 18-19 years old and understood what was going on, but not entirely affected by it being as I was going to the local community college and working a part-time job.

I think my specific age group grew up pretty resilient because we realized that jobs are not just handed out to people. My dad works in landscaping and the work was dead at that time. No one was buying houses, they were all getting foreclosed on and they definitely were not redoing their yards. There were so many houses foreclosed on in our town, some neighborhoods looked liked ghost towns with overgrown yards and shattered dreams.  

I think that my specific age group (born 1986-1990) really saw the economic downturn at a formative time in our lives. I believe that this age group is better because of it. We don’t take our jobs for granted and we are not going to buy a house with some crazy loan. It doesn’t mean we are always the smartest with our money, but we are old enough to remember an economic downtown and we don’t want to be in that situation again. We are thankful to have jobs because we remember a time when it was very difficult to get them.

What’s your Millennial story?

Perhaps you are a millennial too. Are you an Old Millennial or a Young Millennial? Or are you caught in the middle like me? Maybe you have millennials working for you as we make up a large percentage of the workforce. Remember there are many different types of millennials out there, and we might not be that old yet, but we all have a story. If you do have millennials working for you, get to know them more and ask them if they feel like they are an Old Millennial or a Young Millennial or somewhere in the middle. I guarantee you that they will like to weigh in on it. One thing is true of all millennials, we love to discuss being a millennial!