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You Raised Us – Now Work with Us

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You Raised Us – Now Work with Us

Millennials, Career Success, and Building Strong Workplace Teams

American Bar Association,

15 min read
10 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Are the millennials a generation of hope or a hopeless generation? Lauren Stiller Rikleen interviews millennials to provide an accurate portrait.

Editorial Rating



  • Innovative
  • Applicable


Are millennials a generation of hope or a hopeless generation? Are they lazy slackers, selfless idealists, entitled jerks, entrepreneurial geniuses, clueless workers, energetic employees or some amalgam of all these archetypes? Millennials constitute the largest population of any generation in the US workforce and they provoke a churn of opinions and stereotypes. To create an accurate profile and offer employers valuable insights into millennials, intergenerational expert Lauren Stiller Rikleen conducted an elaborate, extensive, revealing survey of more than 1,000 millennials. She discovered their heartfelt views on a diverse range of topics, including ambition, work and identity. For insights into who the millennials really are, heed their own words as they discuss work, vocation, priorities, morals, dealing with their elders, confronting stereotypes, and more. Rikleen’s research will help every generation in the workplace – baby boomers, gen Xers and millennials themselves – collaborate and understand each other better. getAbstract recommends Rikleen’s thorough investigation of this influential generation to parents, professors, HR managers, entrepreneurs, and managers of businesses large and small.


Who Are the Millennials?

Millennials, or members of generation Y, were born between 1978 and 2000. They are the youngest generation in the workplace, joining the baby boomers – born between 1946 and 1964 – and generation X – born between 1965 and 1978. While US boomers are a huge demographic group – 80 million – the millennial generation in the US is bigger – 86 million men and women.

By 2025, three of every four workers across the globe will be millennials. Gen X is not as dominant; boomers outnumber gen Xers two to one. Overall, boomers and gen Xers say they hold negative opinions of millennials. Aligning with the most prevalent stereotypes about millennials, boomers and gen Xers see them as lazy, mollycoddled slackers devoid of workplace loyalty, humility and patience. Older generations believe millennials expect praise and feel entitled to raises and promotions regardless of whether they put in the time or effort to earn such rewards.

Boomers and gen Xers, in general, view millennials as “trophy kids” who were indulged and spoiled by their parents, teachers, counselors and coaches. These common perceptions are not only baseless and mistaken, they’re damaging...

About the Author

Lauren Stiller Rikleen, president of the Rikleen Institute for Strategic Leadership, is an attorney and a professional mediator. She also wrote Ending the Gauntlet: Removing Barriers to Women’s Success in the Law and she serves as Executive-in-Residence at the Boston College Center for Work & Family in the Carroll School of Management.

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    P. M. 9 years ago
    The summary starts off by saying it is wrong to label Millennials as “mollycoddled”, but then it later says “many millennials were raised by hovering, overly protective parents who constantly told them how special they were”.