Marketers? Here’s what my generation is running from. Pay attention.

1. We are running from the life our parents had. Some people say we end up like our parents. I believe otherwise. We pursue the lives they did not have. If they had nothing but a big house, we run from fancy cars and green grass. 

2. We are running from being cog(s) in the wheel. We saw our parents and our friend’s parents work their asses off for the big company that treated them like a number. We are running from the organizations that treat employees like disposable tools versus living breathing human beings. The first question my generation asks isn’t “How much will you pay?” but “How great is the culture?” In other words, how much will you care about me being here?

3. We are running from lack of meaning. They say my generation is lazy. They say we are entitled. They say we don’t have the gumption to work an “entry-level” position… to wait our turn. We aren’t looking for turns. We are looking for meaning. We are looking for impact. We are looking for change. We aren’t interested in punching a card to hopefully one day be the big executive. We are interested in making a difference now. 

4. We are running from wasted time. We don’t want to wait for a taxi. We want to hit a button and be in an Uber in 2 minutes. We don’t want to fuss with hotels. We want to instantly book an Airbnb. We don’t want to stand in line at the bank. We want to simply take a picture of our check and have it deposited. We want to save time on mundane tasks so we can spend more time doing the stuff we actually want to do. 

5. We are running from the lies. We’ve been lied to our entire lives. The biggest lie? Go to college, spend $40,000 on a degree and you will get a job. We are tired of getting f***** over. We want an organization to be honest with us. We want to do business with people that will tell us the truth. We want to buy products and services from brands that value us over our wallets. 

6. We are running from material. We don’t want to pay the mortgage on the mansion. We want experiences. We love Airbnb for the experience. We love traveling for the experience. We love music festivals for the experience. We love sushi and street tacos and Sriracha for the experience. 

7. We are running from quantity. We were raised in a world where quantity was more important than quality. We were raised in an America where it was better to have twenty of something mediocre than one of something extraordinary. But, we don’t want lives weighed down by endless goods. We want craft beer. We want selvedge denim. We want handcrafted leather. We want designer sneakers. We want art. We are looking for art. 

By Cole Schafer. 


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