- Millennials are the generation born between 1981 and 1996.
- Through their sheer size, they’ve impacted industries from fast food to fast fashion to higher education.
- They parent different their own parents — and they run their lives differently, too.
Everyone loves to hate millennials.
The Pew Research Center recently defined this generation as people born between 1981 and 1996. And boy, are they shaking things up.
Below, we rounded up some of millennials’ most significant departures from tradition — tradition being the way their parents did things. Read on to find out how this much-maligned generation is changing life as we know it.
Instead of preparing meals, millennials order takeout
The food industry is responding to major shifts in the way young people eat.
Business Insider’s Akin Oyedele reported that millennials spend the least amount of time on meal prep compared to older generations. Instead, they’re more likely to eat at restaurants, to pick up prepared meals, or to order delivery.
Instead of drinking beer, millennials prefer drinking wine and spirits
Millennials are drinking less alcohol than older generations in general — but when they do drink, they prefer wine and spirits to beer.
Business Insider’s Kate Taylor reported that beer penetration fell 1% from 2016 to 2017 in the US market, according to Nielsen ratings. Wine and spirits stayed the same.
Instead of college, millennials want to learn online
It’s screens versus lectures.
And there’s evidence that Generation Z could be even more disinclined to pursue higher education, especially to avoid falling into debt.
Instead of keeping their salary secret, millennials may share it with coworkers
Money is becoming less taboo.
Business Insider previously reported that millennials are more likely than older generations to discuss their salary with coworkers, family, and friends.
One survey found 30% of millennials (defined as ages 18 to 36) said they felt comfortable discussing pay with coworkers, compared to just 8% of Baby Boomers (ages 53 to 71).
Instead of waiting for an annual performance review, millennials crave more frequent feedback
The annual performance review is slowly disappearing.
IBM, for example, ditched the annual performance review for a system called “Checkpoint,” through which feedback is given on at least a quarterly basis. The company also uses an app called “ACE,” which facilitates a more casual, ongoing dialogue between employees.
These changes reflect a shift in how millennials think about delivering and receiving feedback. Samantha Klein, a representative of IBM’s Millennial Corps, told Business Insider: “We [millennials] don’t want an annual review. We don’t want to wait until the end of the year to hear about what we’ve done right or wrong what we can improve upon.”
Instead of moving in together after they get married, millennials cohabitate before
For many young adults today, a key comes before a ring.
One survey found 72% of millennials believe cohabitation before marriage is a good idea, compared to 63% of Baby Boomers.
Interestingly, INSIDER’s Kim Renfro reported that some sociologists say there could be a link between declining divorce rates and more people deciding to live together before marriage. Presumably, that’s because people have a chance to realize they’re not compatible after cohabiting for years.
Instead of buying starter homes, millennials are waiting until they can afford bigger homes
Yes, millennials are interested in buying homes, just like previous generations. But they’re renting longer, waiting it out until they can afford the real deal.
On an episode of Business Insider’s podcast, “Success! How I Did It,” Spencer Rascoff, CEO of the real-estate website and app Zillow, broke it down for US editor-in-chief, Alyson Shontell:
“Homebuilders really only build high-end houses now. It’s very difficult for a builder to get it to pencil to build a 2,500-square-foot, 2,000-square-foot, 1,500-square-foot starter home, because they can just make so much more money building a 6,000-square-foot-plus home.”
As a result, Rascoff said, home prices shoot up, leaving minimal inventory at the middle and low end of the housing market.
So many millennials end up renting until their 30s, when they buy a home that costs $1 million.
Instead of moving into golf communities, rich millennials are joining ‘agrihoods’
That’s short for “agricultural neighborhoods.”
Business Insider’s Tanza Loudenback reported that “agrihoods could become the 21st-century version of those tony golf communities baby boomers flocked to in the 1990s.”
That’s because millennials may be more interested in societal impact than older generations — and through agrihoods, they can do good for the environment and for their community.
Instead of asking friends and family for parenting advice, millennials turn to Google
Paging Dr. Google!
Millennial parents — a group The New York Times labeled “parennials” — are less likely to turn to friends and family for advice than older generations. Instead, they search for answers themselves online.
That can be a good thing, in that they’re highly informed — or a bad thing, in that so much information is overwhelming.
Instead of traditional asset classes, millennials are investing in more sophisticated assets
Many millennials came of age during the 2008 financial crisis. As Oyedele pointed out, they have “memories of traditional asset classes like stocks cratering and retirement savings being wiped out.”
That’s likely why, according to a US Trust survey, millennials are more interested in “sophisticated” assets like structured products, venture capital, and private equity.
That way, they can hit their near-term financial goals (think paying down debt) and invest in companies that do good for society — two uniquely millennial objectives.
Instead of shopping at department stores, millennials are dressing in fast fashion
That’s largely because, as Business Insider’s Kate Taylor reported,millennials aren’t buying from aspirational, designer brands. Instead they’re buying from private-label lines and fast-fashion brands like H&M and Zara.
Originally published on www.businessinsider.com.
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