PERCEPTIONS OF GEN Y FROM A GEN Y PERSPECTIVE

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Recently, I caught up with some girlfriends of mine for Saturday morning brunch. In typical fashion, we indulged in a gossip session, then we went on to discuss how social media has changed our lives, our stance on political issues and our budgeting goals for our trip to Europe. As we had this conversation, I began to evaluate the common behavioural trends present throughout my age group, Gen Y. So I have decided to share a brief list on the attitudes of this demographic from my own perspective. I'm not going to say that these traits I describe below apply to every member of this group. My aim is to list just some characterises in the hope that others understand that we are not the lazy or debt ridden group that people perceive us to be. 

  1. We are informative. Thanks to our love of Facebook and Facebook’s love of money, the biggest news rooms flood our feeds with the latest stories breaking throughout our nations. So by always being in the know, we are provided with more power to form opinions on issues and to support different charities. Such worthy causes include the Ice Bucket Challenge which was designed to bring awareness to Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). Facebook’s existence allowed the campaign to go viral, eventually raising an incredible $220 million worldwide.
     
  2. We are social. I didn't have Facebook until I was 22. I was one of those sceptics, who figured Facebook was nothing but a way to intrude on others lives.’ But after discovering the funny memes I didn't get to laugh at, the friendships I could have sustained and the events I was ‘forgotten’ to be invited to, I regret not having a Facebook account earlier. This medium has certainly allowed us to communicate with our peers more regularly which is great, until it gets awkward when our parents’ want to become our Facebook friends as well.
     
  3. We are savers. In fact, it’s actually proven, according to the 2013 National Savings and Debt Barometer survey by RaboDirect, it indicated that 29 percent of Gen Y’s have a regular amount of savings, ahead of Gen X with 25 per cent and Baby Boomers with 19 per cent. So yes, we may decide to spend our money on Falls Festival tickets or another pair of shoes, but we work hard and save so that we can pay it off as soon as we can.

So there you have it, that's my two sense. Yes, the negative press you hear about Gen Y maybe true, but there are really only a small percentage of us who are quite frankly, idiots. But I must admit, I do feel we may begin to neglect our savings account if we continue our obsession with buying designer sportswear. But I'll save that for another time.

Nicole O'Sullivan