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Weekly Reader 2.28.11

A Millennial Boss Unimpressed by Millennial Staffers

Leigh Held, a 29-year-old manager of a family-run sports facility, hires millennials for front desk and receptionist positions.   In a Forbes piece, “Millenials Are a Real Piece of Work at Work” she reels off a list of people she hired and fired, learning that some of the Gen Y-worker stereotypes are accurate:

I found a UPenn economics grad on Craigslist and hired her to do administrative work. She also wanted to dictate her own hours because she was starting a company that resold wedding flowers. While she was bright, she was not invested in the job at all and was obsessed with her side project–a common theme among Gen Y. We have an obsession, combined with what seems like pressure, to create the next Google or Gilt Group–or flying car.

While she was there, I needed to hire a new receptionist and found someone whom I thought to be a qualified candidate, again on Craigslist. She was a well-spoken college graduate, but she could not perform basic tasks, such as answering a phone correctly. When I corrected her, I received a call from…her dad? That situation lasted all of three weeks with the dad preaching to me how to run my business, select payroll companies, etc. She (and her dad) got fired.

The problem, she believes, is that many young adults were raised to believe a dream jobs was there for the taking if they got into a top college and snared good internships.  Unfortunately that’s not reality, especially during a recession. As Ms. Held writes,

It’s is not a stretch to say all these people thought these jobs were beneath them. That is a millennial mentality: “I didn’t go to a Top-30 school and achieve a degree in X to do this.” You can hear that said out in bars every weekend.

Excessive Teenage Drinking May Establish a Young Adult Pattern

Sometimes excessive drinking is considering a normal right-of-passage in  the college experience.  But that’s not always the case and sometimes problem drinking in late teenage years can be an early warning sign of excessive drinking that will continue into young adulthood.  That’s the finding of a recent study published in “Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research.”

A CNN piece, “Problem Teen Drinking is Not Just a Phase,” cites the study’s lead author Richard R. Rose of Indiana University who said,

“The key finding was that the more drinking-related problems experienced by an adolescent at age 18, the greater the likelihood that adolescent would be diagnosed with alcoholism seven years later, at age 25.”

At age 18, about 600 twins who are part of a long-term Finnish study completed a questionnaire to assess drinking problems.  As a follow up the participants were interviewed at age 25.  The study found that found  that 52 percent of teens suffered from problematic drinking at age 18, and those results held at age 25.

Using twins allowed the researchers to rule out other factors such as parents and household influence.

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