Generation “Why”: Where do we go, where do we go now (sweet child o’ mine)?


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Baby-boomers obbeyed ther bosses. Generation X openly rebelled, like Nirvana. Generation Y simply ignores authories they don’t respect. They don’t want you to teach them and preach to them, they want you to love them and appreciate them. They are a great business opportunity. They want to work and they are ambitious, but highly flexible. Working from home? Great. Working from a Thailand resort? Even better. Flexible hours, working weekends, free Wednesdays? OK. Anything goes, and nothing is classical now.

Text: Žikica Milošević

Funny thing is that I belong to the Generation X but, since my country was „frozen“ from the end of 1991 to the beginning 2001, I have lost some 10 years in the fog and therefore I feel like s Generation Y member. And we all got „rebooted“ as teenagers when we had to be grown-ups. We had, in former Yugoslavia, especially in UN-sanctioned Serbia, lots of this „Peter Pan syndrome“ in us, but as someone cleverly noticed, we were pioneers in this field. Now everybody in the world has a prolongued teenage and youth, not having any plans to grow mature, or, God forbid, old. And the people who came after us, were approrpiately called „Generation Y“. Partly because Y comes after X, partly because there is a nice word game included: Generation „Why“. A generation that questions everything. Sometimes they called them „Generation I“ (for putting themselves in front of everything), iGeneration (like iPod) or eGeneration (don’t need to mention why „e“), or the Millennials, since they became grown-ups in the year 2000. The first of their generation anyway, since the first generation of the Millennials is said to be the one born in 1980, 1981 or 1982. And after them, the Generation Z. Well, they are still mysterious since the oldest ones among them are 15 (the Generation Z starts at the year 2000). But, forget the Z’s. This is the story of the „Why’s“.

Depressed Narcissus as an archetype

The members of Generation Y are narcissistic more than any other generation before. Maybe Mr Bean invented „selfie“, but the Generation Y made the crucial evolution of it. They are splashed with information. They communicate with short messages, in asynchronous mode, avoiding phone calls. The attention span has dramatically shortened, and the emotional and friendly relations are disruptive and disrupted. Like every other Narcissus, they are rather depressed. Lots of them don’t go out. They think that the hard work is not the way, since every Kardashian can be a star, so why not me? Why wait? Unfortunately, they lack empathy, and they are rather egocentic, don’t stand criticism and they are ready to leave if they face critics, instead of changing themselves. They think, well, like I think most of the time: well, if they don’t like me hear, so why bother? If I am not good for this job, there must be a job quite suitable for me, around the corner. It makes them both good and bad employees and bosses. They are just different. Always ready to move to another place, the Millennials are expected to change from 10 to 14 jobs until they are 38. Wow! I bet your dad changed two positions at most. But here come the depressing narcissi flowers.

The sort attention spoand and the lack of incentive can lead to the fact that many of them still live with their parents, not being financially independent. Sometimes they think that climbing slowly up the ladders of success in career is too slow and futile. So, why should we bother about too much education, culture? I want it all and I want it now. The Generation Y is perfect „dough“ for „baking“ startups. And truly, they are always prone to find a new niche in the ever-changing world of today’s economy and start their own jobs. They remember things quicker but they they tend to forget them more quickly. A paradox? They have difficulties in concentration since from their childhood they were exposed to multiple sources of information. And yet, it made them good in multitasking.

The Generation Y is known for short concentration and disbelief in many things. If for X’s a tattoo was a rebellion, now not having a tattoo could be a rebellion – a tattoo is now mainstream. They are notoriously bad in retaining not only jobs but relationships. They dislike systemic parties and vote for extreme solutions, even mockery. Trump, Sanders, Brexit, Cinque Stelle. You name it. Ljubiša Preletačević – Beli. It is an ironic generation. And that makes the world falsely optimistic and deeply depressed. They can walk away from everything: ideas, jobs, friends, loved ones. The Generation X  was the last generation when women wanted to get married and men tried to escape it saying „well I am young and crazy“. Now everyone is crazy and forever young. But superficial too, inactive. Active holidays like skiing lost their appeal. The Millennials like lazy sun holidays. In Serbia, Generations X and Y somehow merged. And they say we should be somehow afraid of the „silent“ and introvert Generation Z. But one thing is certain. The world will never be the same as Generation Y rises to the sky.

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