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The Office Rookies Who Ask for the World

By The Wall Street Journal

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  • Adam Najberg
    Adam Najberghead of digital communications at Alibaba

    My take on this is not related to millennial entitlement. It's the startup culture that is all around them. Everything moves at an accelerated pace, and they see 25-year-old CEOs. many are missing is the understanding of the great risks taken by this startup kids. It's true companies can really only reward with money and titles. My point to them has always been - if you want stability, there's no rocket to the top. Everything is a choice. You can run your own small company and make it big, if you're

    My take on this is not related to millennial entitlement. It's the startup culture that is all around them. Everything moves at an accelerated pace, and they see 25-year-old CEOs. many are missing is the understanding of the great risks taken by this startup kids. It's true companies can really only reward with money and titles. My point to them has always been - if you want stability, there's no rocket to the top. Everything is a choice. You can run your own small company and make it big, if you're lucky. At a large company, though, even if you're great and have a great boss or mentor, you're always a cog in a machine.

  • Bradley Tusk
    Bradley TuskproCEO at Tusk Ventures

    Now that I’m 45, I look at the millennial employees I’ve had over the years and respond with the conventional shudder of horror at their entitlement and expectations. But were we all really that different when we were their age? You succeed by being proactive and unafraid. Those aren’t necessarily traits to discourage.

  • Greg Vetter
    Greg VetterCEO at Tessemae’s

    Let ‘em do it. It will be the fastest promotion to firing in history. At the end of the day it comes down to self and situational awareness. Unfortunately these young bucks have none and the only way they are going to get it is through a good old fashion ass whoopin. As a growing company we stopped hiring young people unless they had deep experience which is almost impossible because it was disruption to the culture. The lack of awareness of their own limitations and then the never ending whining

    Let ‘em do it. It will be the fastest promotion to firing in history. At the end of the day it comes down to self and situational awareness. Unfortunately these young bucks have none and the only way they are going to get it is through a good old fashion ass whoopin. As a growing company we stopped hiring young people unless they had deep experience which is almost impossible because it was disruption to the culture. The lack of awareness of their own limitations and then the never ending whining about workload, pressure, etc. was unnecessary. I have 4 kids at home. I don’t need more at work.

  • It is a bit troubling to hear that 75% of those in the workforce ages 18-23 believe they are owed a promotion after the first year on the job. This most likely comes from being raised with of the “everyone gets a trophy” mentality.

    There is a big difference between entitlement and being driven, and it is important that we don’t assume that all employees of this generation feel that they are owed something. Many do want to work for advancement and true colors usually shine when put to the test.

  • First, let me establish that I was born in 1987.

    In all the jobs I've held over the years, I have been lucky enough, circumstancially, to find myself in situations where I could really flex muscle and prove my worth. And I received promotions within a year of employment. Sometimes, it came in the form of more responsibility, others in financial remuneration (even in small amounts), sometimes in the form of a title.

    This is not because of the "everyone deserves a trophy" mentality. Millennials

    First, let me establish that I was born in 1987.

    In all the jobs I've held over the years, I have been lucky enough, circumstancially, to find myself in situations where I could really flex muscle and prove my worth. And I received promotions within a year of employment. Sometimes, it came in the form of more responsibility, others in financial remuneration (even in small amounts), sometimes in the form of a title.

    This is not because of the "everyone deserves a trophy" mentality. Millennials nowadays demand frequent, transparent feedback - even if it's negative. It allows them to be agile and adjust their course of action dynamically to poise them for better results. They demand promotions because they expect recognition. In their minds, if you haven't given them any negative feedback throughout the year, they've been doing a good job.

    That may be because performance reviews are typically conducted annually, and there isn't another forum for them to be evaluated and discussed.

    Do you honestly think they would be demanding promotions if you would have spent the time to ground them and be realistic about their impact throughout the year?

  • “He arranged for her to take programming courses at the company’s expense, but she still left for a higher-paying job because he couldn’t offer her as big a raise as she wanted.”

    Also known as a well functioning labor market

  • Anarkos Smith
    Anarkos Smith

    Most people in the US are about one financial setback from extreme poverty. One medical emergency, one vehicular issue or maybe identity theft. When young people show that they are serious about their work and serious about being ambitious, that should be applauded. Remember, most young people are poor, that's why they are trying for those raises. You can't get a car for $600 anymore and a single income is rarely enough for rent. Let's talk about high taxation of small business owners and corporate

    Most people in the US are about one financial setback from extreme poverty. One medical emergency, one vehicular issue or maybe identity theft. When young people show that they are serious about their work and serious about being ambitious, that should be applauded. Remember, most young people are poor, that's why they are trying for those raises. You can't get a car for $600 anymore and a single income is rarely enough for rent. Let's talk about high taxation of small business owners and corporate bailouts in conjunction with low wages, high inflation and low access to credit with high interest. You baby boomers fucked everybody, now pay up

  • Actually EVERYONE should be “entitled” to advocating for themselves and getting the best deal they can. Whether they “deserve it” or have “earned it” this is a market economy at it’s best. Every worker, whatever generation, should get the best deal they can. Every employer should try to keep the best employees at the best cost they can for their business. If you feel you are worth more, and can get it at your company, or elsewhere, your loyalty should be to yourself, because a “company” is not your

    Actually EVERYONE should be “entitled” to advocating for themselves and getting the best deal they can. Whether they “deserve it” or have “earned it” this is a market economy at it’s best. Every worker, whatever generation, should get the best deal they can. Every employer should try to keep the best employees at the best cost they can for their business. If you feel you are worth more, and can get it at your company, or elsewhere, your loyalty should be to yourself, because a “company” is not your friend. They say thank you with a pay check. If someone appreciates you more- go for it. And for companies that get frustrated, they need to look in the mirror and think about retention strategies.

  • Jessica Hanson
    Jessica Hanson

    It is a bit troubling to hear that 75% of those in the workforce ages 18-23 believe they are owed a promotion after the first year on the job. This most likely comes from being raised with of the “everyone gets a trophy” mentality.

    There is a big difference between entitlement and being driven, and it is important that we don’t assume that all employees of this generation feel that they are owed something. Many do want to work for advancement and true colors usually shine when put to the test.

    It is a bit troubling to hear that 75% of those in the workforce ages 18-23 believe they are owed a promotion after the first year on the job. This most likely comes from being raised with of the “everyone gets a trophy” mentality.

    There is a big difference between entitlement and being driven, and it is important that we don’t assume that all employees of this generation feel that they are owed something. Many do want to work for advancement and true colors usually shine when put to the test.”

    Maybe it is correlated to only 30% of millennials thinking they can actually pay back loans and not die in debt before they need medical care they can’t afford? Judgement with ignorance is easy. Empathy and listening makes the world better. The older generations created the world that we live in and the way the youth acts has always been a consequence of those who raised them. A huge core issue is people being unable to be mentally balanced and admit to their truth for all its bad and good. Living a delusion has never helped us and the truth is many people have collectively made mistakes in many generations that have led us here. We can continue those mistakes or see our truth and change.

  • Paul O'Brien
    Paul O'BrienCEO at MediaTech Ventures

    Seems there is a lot of judgement of young people expecting more, so here's a different take... the pension is gone; company loyalty to employees, gone; we've saddled younger people with MORE debt because of education; and the home is a seemingly unattainable dream. Worse, entry level jobs keep going to more senior people - as our economy shifts with many more jobs being automated or eliminated, older people stay in starter jobs. Imagine a year after *college* finding yourself in that situation..

    Seems there is a lot of judgement of young people expecting more, so here's a different take... the pension is gone; company loyalty to employees, gone; we've saddled younger people with MORE debt because of education; and the home is a seemingly unattainable dream. Worse, entry level jobs keep going to more senior people - as our economy shifts with many more jobs being automated or eliminated, older people stay in starter jobs. Imagine a year after *college* finding yourself in that situation... That's not what you went $80,000 into debt for. This isn't the same as older generation's experience, from which people say, "we put in our time." It's a discouraging experience when the future looks questionable, rather than the career path to the corner office. Entrepreneurship is on the rise for one simple reason that the ROI of working 9-5 for a company has lost it's luster. Millennials see it, and anyone of any generation should be able to see that it's happening too.

  • In some cultures, such as India for example, there is the same expectation of what we would consider a "rapid rise." While it may be concerning there is an expectation of such upward mobility, with the startup culture this isn't unheard of, and in essence this activity is now trying to translate in more stabilized businesses. Honestly, I see a lot of coworkers self promoting by applying for new positions after a year due to the lack of salaries keeping up with increased benefit costs, decreased benefits, cost of living, etc.

  • Henry Tobias Jones
    Henry Tobias JonesEditor of Dyson on: at Dyson

    This is so true. It happens everywhere today. I put years of work into training as a local jour a list, writing about bake sales and park cleans. But there is no sense of respect for history - in no small part because those above them refuse to help them make their way up.

  • I have no problem promoting deserving millennials quickly... if... and this is a big if, I can fire incompetent millennials quickly.

    They expect quick promotions but can't accept any negative feedback. At multiple companies, HR has held sessions where execs were told things like to only give negative feedback after we share praise OR be sure to tell them they are a very valued employee no matter how unacceptable their work is.

  • Dr Gail Barnes
    Dr Gail BarnesPartner at Personify LLC

    If you want to retain talent, frequent feedback, clear information about realistic career paths and opportunities to build new skills are always a go idea...for all levels of employees.

  • Konajilo Barrasso
    Konajilo Barrasso SVP, Tech at WE communications

    It should be based on the work and ability as well as future potential. If I see someone has it to go further than they are and shows it every day then why not. Age and amount of time on the job shouldn’t be the sole qualifier or disqualifier. With that, I appreciate asking for what you want but you also need to realize you may get a no if you don’t or haven’t shown you have the goods.

  • Jerry Gaynor
    Jerry Gaynor

    The real world is indifferent to the expectations of those raised believing that their self esteem trumps the value they bring to their employers. Labor is now and has always been a commodity.

  • I understand both sides: the patience (or not) of explaining the Gen Z about getting depth and the desire or entitlement by Gen Z. It is just that the world is changing fast and Gen Z, either under student debts or grown fast past start up culture are anxious to move up quickly. The question is how to handle this new type of workforce, now we are aware of their needs.

  • Steve Carlson
    Steve Carlson

    Promotions are seen as confirmation of jobs done well. It's also known that millennials are willing to leave a job much quicker then those from generations past. Rewarding your top talent with promotions seems like common sense in an ultra competitive work environment.

  • Patricia Lynne
    Patricia Lynne

    Promote them, if you can. Fill their original position. Hold them to the higher standard. Make them accountable for decisions. No going back. Biggest lesson of their professional lives.

  • Well you cannot blame them for wanting the world anyway..because that’s the reason they want the job......yes the timing of the first promotion is a critical issue...patience has become a rare commodity these days.The new corporate culture values and rewards restless and undying creativity as compared to a display of patient and complacent inactive ness.

  • Something I've found to be true, at least in my experience as a Millennial, is that many entry-level and even some mid-level jobs are not only monotonous, but also fairly easy. Millennials are smart, which means they are extremely prone to boredom. Retail and food service might satisfy our desire to learn for a year, but after that, we're looking for the next thing.

    We're also driven by the desire to become rich well before the age when our parents did, because we want to enjoy our wealth while

    Something I've found to be true, at least in my experience as a Millennial, is that many entry-level and even some mid-level jobs are not only monotonous, but also fairly easy. Millennials are smart, which means they are extremely prone to boredom. Retail and food service might satisfy our desire to learn for a year, but after that, we're looking for the next thing.

    We're also driven by the desire to become rich well before the age when our parents did, because we want to enjoy our wealth while we're young.

    Millennials are essentially the consequence of parents who gave their kids everything and now those kids have grown up and come to terms with a world that gives them nothing for free.

  • This is a side effect of a healthy market. Yeah, it’s annoying, but I’d rather have this problem than high percentage unemployment. Remember Spain a few years back? One of the coolest countries on the globe was reduced to political and economic chaos when a large percentage of their youth were unable to find work. I’ll take ambitious, bitchy kids over that situation any day of the week.

  • Millennials and genZ employees want purpose and recognition in their careers. There should be no prescribed timeframe for either of those things.

  • If the work that's put in EXCEEDS expectations and one's job description I don't see anything wrong with having a discussion with your boss. Now, deserving a raise is another topic. Nothing is owed to you but death. Going above and beyond shows character, just hope your employer recognizes it.

  • Akash Goel
    Akash GoelSoftware Development Engineer at Amazon

    This is a natural outcome of burdening the current generation with gigantic education loans. Imagine having a debt of 100k, wouldn't you want to get a raise as soon and as often as possible yourself?

  • Larry quisno
    Larry quisnoretired at 102 kroos drive Antwerp Ohio

    What in fast food

  • Brent Jatko
    Brent JatkoThe University of Texas at Austin

    How many years do you have to work to "pay your dues?" I don't know. But it should be at least a year or two. I think 3 years is a fair mark.

  • zubz Sayed
    zubz Sayed

    The fact is, we have young people with big aspirations who want to change the world. The problem with old timers is they believe that it should take massive patience to achieve their goals. Which is true, however with our technology and how we have built this world up until this point means we can achieve it faster. So to all you 25 year old struggling and successful ceo's I salute you and wish you nothing but success.

  • Shannon Connor
    Shannon Connor

    Honestly, there are many people out there who do the bare minimum they need to keep their job. We millenials see this, work hard, and yes, expect some form of raise or promotion for putting effort into our job. Not surprising. And if we don't get the wage we need, we will leave and go somewhere willing to pay us what we're worth. That's how you do jobs.

  • ben ellis
    ben ellis

    This is an interesting article, largely i see a lot of places where the millennial entitlement mentality is taking root. However, amidst their impatience is also the sense of wanting to make a difference, which is admirable, but the rwality is that "making a difference" is rarely measuted in months or a year, but rather is measured in years and decades. Yes, there are some who have sky-rocketed to the rops of their industries, but the are the exceptions not the rule. The kind of fast paced advancement

    This is an interesting article, largely i see a lot of places where the millennial entitlement mentality is taking root. However, amidst their impatience is also the sense of wanting to make a difference, which is admirable, but the rwality is that "making a difference" is rarely measuted in months or a year, but rather is measured in years and decades. Yes, there are some who have sky-rocketed to the rops of their industries, but the are the exceptions not the rule. The kind of fast paced advancement for everyone mentality will leave corporations unstable. Which, some may say corporations need to adapt, and thats true, but equally so do employees who are working in industries where time and experience actually are relevant factors.

    Full disclosure, i am not a millenial, but slow changes do frustrate me. So i am sympathetic to people who want to change quickly, but making real substantive changes takes time. If you only want to change the proverbial "window dressing" so you can put something on your resume, fine, but be aware the changes you made probably have no substance. In the long run that will show.

  • Brian  Wright
    Brian Wright

    Interesting read..

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