What did your parents want to be when they grew up? Your grandparents? And maybe an even better question: Did they follow their dreams?
One of the most highlighted differences between our generation (I’m a Millennial) and those before us is how we choose our careers. Our backgrounds are the root of our lack of understanding of other generations. While our parents and grandparents tended to follow the route to financial security and stability, our generation tends to follow our “calling.”
In seeking a career, the generational differences become clear pretty early on. In high school, we get a list of careers and are expected to pick one. Some schools now are even trying to identify a grade-schooler’s potential future career field.
What? I can’t even be bothered to pick out a pair of shoes in less than 30 minutes.
Besides picking quickly, we’re told to do so wisely because we’ll be doing it for the rest of our lives.
What does that even mean?
To us, the idea of not having change as an option is just silly. Things change all the time! Why can’t we be able to change jobs or even careers whenever we want?
We are notoriously known as the generation that’s afraid of commitment. The thing is, commitment isn’t the problem. The problem is finding something that will never stop making us happy.
Once we find it, you’d be surprised at how easily we can commit.
“It” is our calling, something we define as what we were put on this Earth to do. It sounds cheesy, but we all believe it, embrace it, feel it. We know we all have a purpose, and that our purpose isn’t separate from our careers.
Millennials equate a successful career with doing meaningful work. In fact, according to The Hiring Blog, 71 percent of us said this is among the three most important factors defining career success. Nearly a third believed it was the most critical factor!
This means that in order to make the workforce as strong as we know it can be, the Millennial generation and those before us need to work together. Pop culture makes a lot of jokes and calls our generation a lot of things, but the truth is that we don’t get enough credit for all the things we’ve been brave enough to do.
We are free and we love what we love. We embrace the fear and the change.
A Huffington Post blogger sums us up:
“Despite facing skyrocketing tuition fees and a pretty scary unemployment rate, what struck me most was the enthusiasm, conviction and hope they all had in taking that first step.”
Johanna Herrera is senior at IUPUI studying public relations with a minor in sports marketing. Currently, she serves as Achieve’s marketing and PR intern.