Millennials, often on the receiving end of the blame for various societal shifts and changes, have become the scapegoat generation. From the fall of specific industries to changes in cultural norms, millennials are frequently held responsible.
Here are 20 Things You Should Probably Stop Blaming on Millennials. Let’s set the record straight and offer a fresh perspective on this dynamic and influential generation.
Avocado Toast Affinity
The notion that millennials’ financial struggles stem from excessive spending on avocado toast has been widely debunked. In truth, the significant economic challenges this generation faces, such as student loan debt and high housing costs, are the real culprits.
According to the Federal Reserve, millennials’ average student loan debt is around $33,000, which outweighs the cost of any avocado toast.
The “Death” of the Real Estate Market
While it’s true that homeownership rates for millennials are lower than previous generations at the same age, this isn’t due to a lack of desire to own homes. A study by Apartment List found that 90% of millennial renters would prefer to own a home, but financial obstacles were hindering them.
Killing the Diamond Industry
The diamond industry has seen a dip, but it’s not the death knell that some assume. De Beers said US millennials spent $26 billion on diamond jewelry in 2015, the most of any generation.
Decline of the Auto Industry
While millennials may be less likely to own a car than prior generations, this isn’t due to a lack of interest. According to the American Public Transportation Association, the high cost of automobile ownership makes millennials more inclined to use public transportation.
The End of Print Media
While print newspaper readership is declining, digital news consumption is rising. According to the Pew Research Center, 64% of millennials reported getting news from a digital platform.
The Fall of Brick-and-Mortar Stores
While e-commerce is on the rise, a report by CBRE found that 70% of millennials still prefer shopping in physical stores.
The Decline of Marriage
The changing societal norms and economic circumstances mean millennials are marrying later, but they’re not giving up on it. As per a Gallup poll, 86% of single millennials want to get married someday.
Killing the 9-to-5 Workday
Although the gig economy and remote employment are growing, the conventional workday is still alive. Deloitte found that millennials prefer work-life balance, which may be accomplished via flexible hours rather than the end of the 9-to-5.
Destroying the Wine Industry
Despite assumptions, millennials drink more wine than their older counterparts. A Wine Market Council report found that millennials consumed 42% of all wine drunk in the U.S. in 2015.
Ruining Tourism with “Experiential Travel”
Millennials value experiences over possessions, and this includes travel. The travel industry has adapted to this trend rather than being damaged.
The Decline of the Film Industry
With the advent of streaming services, cinema attendance may be down, but consumption of film and TV shows is not. A survey by Deloitte found that 56% of millennials stream movies and TV shows every month.
Killing the Luxury Goods Market
While millennials may prioritize experiences over luxury goods, they aren’t entirely shunning them. A report by Bain & Company found that millennials and Gen Z accounted for nearly 50% of the luxury goods market in 2020.
The Decline of the Music Industry
While physical album sales have declined, music streaming is booming. The IFPI found that in 2019, 56% of all recorded music revenue came from streaming, with millennials leading the charge.
The End of the Banking Industry
Millennials trust tech companies more than banks for financial services, but this isn’t the downfall of the banking sector. A report by Accenture found that 86% of millennials will be using digital banking by 2020.
Destroying the Beer Industry
Craft beers and wines may be gaining popularity, but beer consumption isn’t declining. The Brewers Association found that in 2018, millennials accounted for 15% of total beer volume consumption.
The Fall of Traditional TV
While millennials are likelier to use streaming services, traditional TV isn’t dead. According to Nielsen, 25-34-year-olds still watch an average of two hours and 45 minutes of TV daily.
Killing the Fitness Industry with “Wellness”
The shift from traditional gyms to wellness-centered fitness reflects changing preferences but doesn’t spell the end of the fitness industry.
The Decline of Fast Food
While millennials prefer healthier options, they haven’t killed fast food. Data from YouGov found that 57% of millennials eat at fast-food restaurants once a week.
The End of the Oil Industry
Millennials may be more eco-conscious, but this doesn’t mean the end of oil. The International Energy Agency predicts that oil demand will continue to grow until at least 2040, with millennials being the largest consumer group.
Ruining Traditional Retail
E-commerce may be growing, but traditional retail isn’t dying. A study by NRF found that over half of millennial shoppers prefer in-store shopping. So, instead of blaming every societal and economic change on millennials, looking at the underlying reasons and adapting to them is essential.
As a generation, millennials face unique challenges, such as rising living costs and changing job markets. It’s not fair or productive to blame them for these changes, but rather have open discussions and find solutions together.
Rather than focusing on the negatives, it’s also essential to recognize the positive impacts that millennials have had on industries. Their preference for experiences has led to a rise in unique and innovative travel options, their shift towards sustainable and ethical products has influenced companies to prioritize social responsibility, and their embrace of technology has pushed for advancements in various industries.