Gen Z rock & Rule

Are you tired of telling your kid to ‘adult’? Let's grow up and instead think about the strengths that millennials possess, writes Neharika Gupta
Last Updated : 11 November 2019, 20:30 IST
Last Updated : 11 November 2019, 20:30 IST

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Millennials and Gen Z kids have minds of their own. While millennials were born with a silver iPhone, Gen Z are with a podcast mic in hand. Selfie skills are going to be genetic henceforth. Jokes apart, young people today, know more about the world than their parents did. They have a keen knowledge of the history of the world, the good and the bad and they learn it from an early age. Parents on the other hand would want them to behave like adults and to do the things that adults regularly have to do, in other words, be responsible.

Kids today have internet access in school right from kindergarten, leaving the World Wide Web open to them. They are well-versed with all kinds of technology, especially that of smartphones, laptops, things we use everyday. The older millennials also know about the benefits and pitfalls of advertising, as well as the deep psychology behind marketing campaigns targetted at them.

Challenges galore

It is no surprise that the challenges millennials face include battling decision and information fatigue via thousands of advertisements thrown at them throughout the day and continuing anytime they are online. Even offline, be it buying clothes in the mall, a new phone, hiring a
digital media agency or looking for prospective employers, the options are vast.

This is the first time people are faced with so many choices and it can get overwhelming. In order to take an informed decision, one has to be good at separating and prioritising all the content within a certain time frame. It is all too easy to lose hours once you get lost in the web surfing whirlpool, that is the internet. Over time, this skill of what can be termed ‘smart segregation’ is going to emerge among young Indians.

It’s overwhelming

Too often, young people in creative professions have the internet at their disposal, but the amount of information available overwhelms them in the process.

The way to crack this challenge is to think about what got you into the field in the first place. From that viewpoint, diving into information is not a painstaking process anymore.

Skill set

There is all the creative expression in the world available in terms of books, movies, art at easy access. But now there is also a self-filter. Because something stronger than just information is driving you, and you can easily prioritise and research well. The second big emergent skill which gives millennials the power to go from strength to strength is their ability to learn, creatively gauge and venture into unexplored territory. This creative problem solving is exactly what we need to solve the problems of society.

Millennials are aware and use social media, industry knowledge and experience to crack into the fields of media, some in music and many in business startups.

The third skill is resilience. While today’s generation may seem to have a lot of mood swings dependent on the number of likes and followers they have, this is beginning to fall short in their lives.

Empty likes will only make you happy for so many minutes. After a while even negative comments stop making a difference.

This resilience may take time to appear among young people but it is developing. In a world where everything is online and literally open to ‘comments’ and everyone’s opinions, one has to take this period of ‘like-related’ mood highs and lows with a pinch of salt. Consider it a crash course or a Maths exam, something that is nasty but required to get to the other side.

The kids of millennials and Gen Z will probably know how to handle this social media madness better. We all are learning and grappling with it for the first time.

Millennials and Gen Z are often called the lost generations. But they may not be so. In a world full of endless ideas and things to spark creativity, it just takes a while for them to take things in and integrate their life purpose with their daily actions. They can do with a little guidance and
minimalism. Aim not to stifle their endeavours to make a difference. After all, the future is in their hands.

(Neharika Gupta is the author of ‘Adulting’)

Published 11 November 2019, 20:18 IST

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