Generation Y: Impact on economy and politics

Florian Mueller
Nov 9, 2018 · 5 min read

Today I would like to talk about a different but fascinating topic. The generation Y and yeah I admit I am part of that generation which gives me valuable first hand insight but might also make me a bit biased. Nevertheless I will try and be as objective as I can be …… so here it goes.

Generation Y (Why;)

This year (2018) even the youngest of this generation will become 18 and be considered an adult. Born between early 1980’s and 2000 generation Y accounts for a great part of today’s and future workforce. So how is this generation influencing the future especially in the economy and politics?

As mentioned above I am part of this generation (being born in 1987) which gives me first hand insight. Like every generation, generation Y is being influenced by many external events that shapes and forms it. One of the most prominent influences surely has been and continues to be the Digital Revolution with the introduction of the internet in 1993 and its staggering success in the years to come. I am pretty certain that few people of this generation can actually remember life before the internet. Having grown up with these technologies Ylers are the first truly “Digital Natives” of our time.

Few can probably remember life before the internet.

Derived from their name people often associate this generation with asking “Why” in almost every situation. Being critical towards authorities, restless and always in search of “something” are only some of the prejudices people think of when confronted with this generation.

In business and economy, we have already seen shifts and changes as the “first batch” of Ylers has entered the business world. Companies are adjusting and transforming their working and recruiting methods. For previous generations it was normal to find a job and work at the same company for most part of their business life. A regular 9 to 5 job based in the same city with little or no travel was the usual employment. This view on work has completely shifted as generation Y values its independence, challenges authorities, dislikes repetitive work and the same work environment day in and day out. Ylers like their independence with respect to where and when they work, to whom they report and what kind of work they do. Many companies have already adjusted their recruiting models and offer home office, flexible working hours and such.

“Purpose” is maybe the most important word and motto for the generation Y. The work and everything they do has to have a purpose, a meaning and ideally should serve some greater good for society.

The internet changed everything

The internet has given us the possibility to get information on basically every topic we want to know and learn about, globalization has brought us closer together than never before. We can get almost anywhere in the world within a day. Surely growing up in such a fast-paced and changing environment shapes a generation. Being able to work in the same company for your entire professional life is not a desire anymore. Certainly for the economy and companies it is a challenge and they have to make efforts and adjust. However, if they can shift towards those new needs they will most probably get the best educated workforce we have seen until today. Not only do we have more people with a university degree (which I know is not necessarily a measure for success but still serves as a good measurement) but also people that long for information, lifelong learning and self-improvement, as well as the wish to create.

They will most probably get the best educated workforce we have seen until today.

A result of this phenomenon surely is the rise of startups. The most valuable companies of today’s world are not manufacturing or industrial companies, no they are technology companies, serving goods, services and technology to the world, created many times by the generation Y.

Politics will have to adapt.

Not only is the economy changing due to this generation, also politics have and will see further change in the years to come. It seems that politicians have not yet grasped the importance and power of generation Y. While other generations would protest on the streets whenever politicians made questionable decisions, Ylers execute their revolution online, through social media and other channels. Facebook and Co. have allowed for an exchange of information, opinion and discussions as fast as never before. Communities and social platforms can have a huge impact on politics. People do not necessarily have to go onto the streets anymore but can have their protest online, uniting thousands of others around them in an instance. While this silent revolution is a feature of generation Y another question is how interested Ylers are in politics in general. Some would say since there are so many opportunities in engaging in social, economic and business opportunities that politics might have been a bit forgotten.

People do not necessarily have to go onto the streets anymore but can have their protest online, uniting thousands of others around them in an instance.

Surely generation Y has strong opinions on many topics which they happily share on social media but how many are actually striving for political offices? This should be one of the important tasks of politicians today to ensure interest in politics and political offices. Countries need people from all generations and backgrounds to represent its people. Using digital infrastructures to modernize politics is an important task for the years and decades to come.

Adjusting and profiting from generation Y

The economy and politics can profit from generation Y’s creativity, smart and purpose driven attitude, it is important that they find the proper channels to communicate with them. Ylers will shape the economy further as more and more of them enter the job market and with the right strategies politicians can ensure an active involvement in politics that transpires far over an involvement on Facebook and other social media outlets.

Today we are living in the most interesting and fast-paced times and to predict the future has become harder and harder, constantly we have to adjust to new environments.

Let us use these new circumstance as a chance to create something extraordinary for us and the generations to come.

Thanks for reading my article and I am looking forward to an active discussion on the topic. Please comment below and let us have a conversation. Have an amazing day and until next time :)

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