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10 Misconceptions About Millennials


7
They Need Constant Praise
One stereotype is that millennials' need for constant affirmation is related to their helicopter parents who praised the smallest things they did. Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Thinkstock
One stereotype is that millennials' need for constant affirmation is related to their helicopter parents who praised the smallest things they did. Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Thinkstock

They say it's the fault of the older generation. Because parents coddled their baby millennials, showering them with praise for everyday accomplishments and handing out trophies just for showing up, young-adult millennials now are spoiled, constantly fishing for approval and praise. It's true that members of this generation tend to look for a nod that they're doing well, but not necessarily because they're spoiled.

Millennials were raised in an era where kids had a say in what they did both in school and afterward. They were constantly evaluated in school and during sports and other after-school activities, and instructed on how to best improve their skills. They were also encouraged to aim high and take on as much as they could. (For instance, it wasn't enough to just play on a high school team – they had to play on a year-round traveling team as well.) As adults, this can translate to employees seeking feedback and affirmation; research shows 80 percent of millennials want regular feedback from their managers, and 80 percent preferred on-the-spot recognition to formal reviews [source: DeMonte]. Yet their affirmation-seeking isn't necessarily because they're looking for an unwarranted pat on the back – they're just used to immediate feedback. On the positive side, this upbringing also means millennials tend to accept guidance if they're on the wrong track, which is a big plus in any employee [source: Graves].


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