With millennials on pace to become the “largest living adult generation in the U.S.” in 2028, it would seem that baby boomers could stand to learn a thing or two from younger generations. But when it comes to career advice, the knowledge sharing is going the other way.
27-year-old Farrah Jaffrey spent time with her father, a baby boomer who has held the same job for 15 years, and walked away with several valuable takeaways.
Have a Consistent Work Schedule
To Jaffrey — and many other millennials — having set work hours is quite the turn off. According to a study reported by Forbes, 77 percent of millennials believe “having flexible work hours would make the workplace more productive for people their age.” But the traditional 9-to-5 offers its own benefits, too. According to Jaffrey’s father, having consistent work hours eliminates unpredictability and actually gives you more control of your personal life.
Jaffrey said, “Flexibility is great; however, having a consistent schedule makes it easier for me to plan my life outside of the office.”
Don’t Put Too Much Emphasis on Work Culture
Nowadays many companies dedicate a section in their job postings about the perks of working there. Although work culture might be a primary consideration for many millennials, it’s simply not on the radar of most baby boomers.
The biggest concern for Jaffrey’s father and his generation? — job security. According to a 2016 poll reported by Fortune in 2016, “40 percent of baby boomers have stayed with the same employer for more than 20 years.”
“Baby boomers seem to place less emphasis on work culture and more emphasis on job security, Jaffrey said. “As long as my dad has a job, regardless of work satisfaction, he’s happy with that stability. Emergencies can arise, so I do think having that stability is important.”
It’s Okay to Play It Safe Sometimes
Millennials might take a chance when it comes to their job search. With youth — and some might argue naiveté — on their side, they tend to feel like their dream job is just around the corner, and they’re not afraid to do some job hopping in order to obtain it.
“Millennials tend to have more a positive outlook on their work lives,” Jaffrey said. “We are not bummed if a job isn’t the right fit because we feel that we can easily land something new. I once got laid off from a job, but it was the best thing that ever happened to me because I got an even better job after that one.”
But for Jaffrey’s father, the certainty and stability of a job is critical.
“Millennials tend to be more risky, which can be rewarding in the end,” Jaffrey said. “Baby boomers might prefer to have the same job for a good period of their life — even if that preference is rooted in fear.”
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