Myths about Millennials in the Workplace

Millennials (a person reaching adulthood around the year 2000) currently represent over 50% of the nation's workforce, and in 25 years that number will jump to 75%!  It is important to know the impact that this will have in today's changing workplace. Many perceive millennials to be lazy, narcissistic, or energized optimists who want to change the world. Is this true?

IBM came out with an infographic about the myths, exaggerations and uncomfortable truths of millennials which sparked my little interest in this topic. Knowing your employees goals, values and work habits can help foster a mentally healthy organization, no matter what generation you work with.

Here are five common myths about Millennials and the truth behind them:

Myth 1 – Millennials’ career goals and expectations are different from those of older generations. FALSE! 

FACT: Millennials' place the same value on career goals as older employees do. They are more interested than the baby boomers, for example, in making a positive impact on their organization and marginally less interested in helping to solve social or environmental challenges.

Myth 2 – Millennials want constant acclaim and believe everybody on the team should get a trophy.  FALSE!

FACT: Millennials want a manager who is ethical and fair and want to be treated this way in the workplace. Many Millennials think it is less important to have a boss who recognizes their own individual accomplishments.

Myth 3 – Millennials are digital addicts who want to do everything online. FALSE!

FACT: Millennials report their top three preferences for learning to be in person, not virtual. 39% report preferring to attend a third-party sponsored conference or event, 37% report the desire to attend classroom training,  and 36% report wanting to work alongside knowledgeable colleagues.

Myth 4 – Millennials, unlike their older colleagues, can’t make a decision without first inviting everyone to weigh in. FALSE!

FACT: Research suggests that Generation X, ie. older colleagues believe in soliciting opinions from many others in the workplace even more than Millennials do.

Myth 5 – Millennials are more likely than others to jump ship if a job doesn’t fulfill their passions. FALSE!

FACT: Employees of all generations share the same reasons for changing jobs.

Have you noticed a difference in the way Millennials work in your office? How do you get to know the needs of your colleagues/employees?

Gaining knowledge and understanding can help develop a supportive workplace where individuals are valued, productive, and mentally healthy.  The Millennial generation is now entering into employment and may reshape the world of work. Are you ready?




Myths about millennials in the workplace. (2016 May 19.). Retrieved June 13, 2016, from