Millennials have now surpassed baby boomers as the most populous generation. Soon millennials will become the leaders in the technology and architecture fields as baby boomers start to reach retirement age. We have already started to see how millennials are changing workplace dynamics. In general, millennials approach work differently than older generations. They prefer to work in teams, they take a lot of risks, and they ask a lot of questions. They will especially change the work dynamics in the architecture and technology fields.
The main way that millennials are changing the technology field is though diversity. They have really changed the composition of the workplace. Millennials have new ideas and an entirely different way of approaching problems. They often think of creative ways to overcome obstacles. While they tend to look for shortcuts, these shortcuts can actually solve real-world problems and increase efficiency.
These are the next generation of leaders. Many people think millennials have no work ethic and are entitled. This is not true. Millennials are open-minded and willing to work hard. They simply have different expectations. The workplace has changed so much since most baby boomer entered the work force, so it makes sense that these generations have different expectations. Millennial’s instincts are to work smarter—not harder. They care less about metrics and more about genuine productivity. Still, millennials have room to learn from those who came before them. Seniority needs to remain open to new approaches and accept that change is inevitable.
In the architecture field, millennials are truly breaking the norms. They do not want to wait a long time or have to pay their dues before diving into the creative aspects of architecture. They want more design responsibility early on and most have the creative talent to back it up. Millennials have a reputation for needing a lot of hand-holding. In reality, most prefer to take more responsibility and to have a great deal of independence.
Millennials care about self-expression and social awareness. This affects every aspect of their designs. They also care more about experiences than physical belongings. This is manifested in their approach to design. They will want to design buildings that provide experiences or some kind of social benefit. This might cause tension in the workplace as baby boomers tends to care more about practicality and finances, but millennials provide insight into what clients are looking for.
Millennials are passionate and energetic. While their unique approach to architecture and technology may cause conflict with some baby boomers who likely have very different expectations, this energy will actually enhance the vast amount of knowledge and experiences that baby boomers have accumulated over the years. The two generations have lot that they can learn from each other.
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