Saturday, December 1, 2012

Misconceptions About Generation Y

On Twitter, I've seen some discussions regarding Generation Y that simply lack evidence to support them and some that we could classify as wishful thinking. Make no mistake: a temptation exists to assert that this next generation will solve all of the problems and be much more perfect that former generations (for some - especially Echo Boomers), but that's simply untrue.

Generation Y Is Healthier

This misconception is more popular because the US has seen an increase in obesity and some are desperate to see some progress. Will Generation Y be more health conscious? According to the data, no (I've addressed this before this in the posts Will Generation Y Be More Fitness-Conscious? and Media Lies and Millennial "Doting"). The truth is that Echo Boomers are actually contributing to the problem; and thus restaurants do not see a need to produce healthy foods (contradicting what the Twitter user had previously said).

Echo Boomer's Use of Social Media Will Save the World

Social media does not produce wealth (this is real wealth). Social media generates conversations (ie: talk), which, without action, fails to produce anything of value. Some marketers hope that they will be able to use these conversations to make money - but many of these attempts have failed. Regardless, making money off of conversations still doesn't produce wealth. How are people's standard of living increasing with social media (it's not)? How is the cost of living declining? How are people more productive because of social media?

Quite frankly, social media appeals to Generation Y because during youth, people tend to waste countless hours talking and hoping this talk will generate solutions (it doesn't). If you read through history and philosophy, you'll notice that the successful tend to be doers, not talkers. This age will be no exception.

Generation Y Is Wise To Continue Higher Education

No one explains the education bubble better than Mish or TheBubbleBubble (on Twitter). In a nutshell, Generation Y is wasting numerous hours in school. Most college programs simply lack any value (whether academic or financial). Schools have also contributed to a world of "knowing" and not "doing." A world where everyone knows what the problems are (think the national debt), yet somehow, can't do anything about it. Most will waste their time in school and many will see that their academic credentials did nothing to better the world; meanwhile, Deans of schools will brag how wonderful their programs are, while students struggle to actually get jobs. Students may see in time, though, that it requires doing and school offered very little - if any - of that.

Final Note

Just because some dislike these conclusions and facts does not mean they lack truth. We live in an era where wishful thinking is ubiquitous. But reality, like always, has something different to say. And the data show the reality.