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Jared Hamilton
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Grant Gooley

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Will Boomers and Millennials Ever Understand Each Other?

Millennials are often misunderstood creating difficult situations when hiring and retaining the
25 to 34-year-old age groups.  Why is this?

Walking in Millennial boots, you would notice the revamp in communication, using social media, texting and email versus face-to-face conversation.  Using exponential technology like a 3rd arm, never mind a struggle. For these reasons Millennials constantly are challenging conventional business strategy and seeking meaningful careers, needing more fulfillment than just a biweekly auto deposit, with a team environment and the opportunity to explore. Millennials want to innovate and make a change. 

If we compare Millennials to ‘Boomers’ (ages 51 – 68), there are obvious differences. Boomers are competitive and contour the work environment to be “blue collar”. Hard workers by nature and feel that only elbow grease, appearances, and time will gain you respect. Boomers seem to have a negative outlook on Millennials non-caring approach to paying their dues. Boomers fault younger generations for their stress towards a work-life balance by using technology instead of face-to-face practices.

Regardless of the diversity between Baby Boomers and Millennials, their characteristic differences can, in some cases, come together creating nice results. I’ve seen it happen! I’m sure you have as well.  The synergy requires good listeners, communicators and open-minded approaches to the overall goals of the Dealership. Let’s be honest, the Dealership world is busy and every minute that goes by is a minute that people have work to do, SELLING AND SERVICING customers. Not trying to find unity between a Boomer and Millennial.  The outcome is a high turnover and difficult times while trying to build a team and retain the new generation.

I thought I'd lay out some statements and feelings that come straight from the Millennial generation. (Please note: I cannot speak on behalf of ALL Millenials, from the research I have composed and the MANY conversations I have had, these are the outcome statements)


•    Millennials don't work 9-5. Their job is their life. Work-life balance is not a cop out, in fact; it’s a way to say “We won’t stop working until the job is complete.” Appreciate this fact until the 25-year-old punk proves otherwise!

•    Millennials want a purpose in life. A chance to create something.

•    Millennials have technology at their fingertips; they understand technology, and it gives them an edge. Nobody should take that away due to the fact they don’t understand! 

•    Millennials like to grow in variable environments. We have to, in order to survive with today's demands and expensive consumer lifestyle. Don't put a cap on their success. If it's making you more money, let them grow with you!

•    Millennials are entrepreneurs at heart because of the opportunities the world presents us today. We have the resources to share, network and most of all - do what we want if we work hard enough. 


If Dealerships want to retain hard-working young talent, they need to understand who they are and why they act and react the way they do. The point I'm making here is not a free ticket for young people to think they run the world; this post is far from saying that. In fact, respect is due where it’s earned, and Baby Boomers deserve a ton of it because it is their hard work and what they created to allow us Millennials thrive. The minute a young punk takes advantage of the points made in this post, they need to be walked out the door! The Millennials who understand respect and use technology to help your business grow and make more money are the ones you want to do what it takes to understand their way of thinking.  At the end of the day, they are the ones that are going to let you retire ☺ (in some respects)

Do you have a lot of Millennials working in your dealership? How do you deal with the differences in mindsets? 

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