- Our financial situation: The bad news is that your 401k (if you even have one) has been crushed over the last year. What's the term Jed Leffler enjoys consistently using? Squadoosh? Yeah, that's pretty darn relative. The good news is that a lot of Gen Y's haven't started investing in their 401k's yet and if they have they haven't lost much. This financial downturn will (hopefully) help to mold us into more fiscally responsible individuals in the years to come. That responsibility, in the sense of a marketing planning & budgeting, helps to benefit corporate bottom lines.
- If misery loves company, we'll just leave: The bad news is that our managers and bosses and their bosses are probably doing a few things: worrying about their portfolios, worrying about their health and worrying about their kids (who are probably our age). The good news? As much as we subconsciously get dragged into "panic mode" along with the older members our industry, we should remain stoic and focused on the ultimate goal: what are we doing now that will help us achieve our current/future goals. Many of us have yet to take multiple "life leaps" (home ownership, marriage, children etc). The only thing that should be worrying Gen Y right now is which opportunity to take hold of. Oh, and a suggestion to folks who manage Gen Yers--take advantage of this opportunity or you will be quick to find disengaged youngsters itching to leave your firm at the first chance they get. How? Well allow them some autonomy to operate for the benefit of the company. Include them in discussions of cost-savings, operation streamlining, future markets etc. They are the future of your firm--treat them like it and watch them work for you harder than ever before.
- When fate hands you lemons, make lemonade: Right now there is a major opportunity for Gen Y: the chance to prove your value. The bad news? The state of the economy and the even more stolid attempt at solving it. The good news? We can help but we have to offer it. Don't just sit by waiting for your firm to take care of you...offer up your assistance to help in new or unique ways that increase your overall value. What you do now could help you get a great promotion or raise when all this mess is cleared up.
People guess at what the economy will do but one thing is for certain: this is life. The best thing we as Gen Y marketers and future industry leaders can do is be aware of our surroundings AND our environment. Not only offer assistance to your managers, but also ASK them about what got us here in the first place. I'd bet you'd learn a thing or two...and maybe even be able to work out a bartering system...a history lesson in exchange for tips on using the internet.