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Class of 2014: How do employers see your generation of job seekers?

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As another group of Millennials prepares to graduate from college and high school, many of them may be repeating the same job-search mistakes of their predecessors – and contributing to their own “career fails,” according to OI Global Partners-Innovative Career Consulting, a leading human resource consulting firm in Denver.

Employers have a number of concerns about hiring Millennials—who, generally, are those born between the early 1980s and the early 2000s. These doubts are contributing to the unemployment rate for Millennials being roughly double that of the overall population, according to federal government statistics.

“However, Millennials can take steps to address several of these issues and help themselves get the jobs they have been studying for,” said Susan Ruhl, Managing Partner for OI Global Partners-Innovative Career Consulting.

The perceptions about Millennials that many employers have include the following, according to career consultants at OI Global Partners-Innovative Career Consulting:

  • ‘About Me’ Attitude: “Many Millennials have an inwardly focused attitude which conveys that everything is about them and they tend to project a sense of entitlement,” said Ruhl.
  • Work Ethic: Millennials are inclined to prioritize work/life balance ahead of their careers and value non-interference with their personal lives over dedication to their jobs.
  • Weak Communication Skills: “Millennials often do not have good written, verbal, or presentation skills and have limited their writings to Twitter posts and text messages. Employers also feel that numerous Millennials lack the ability to communicate with other generations, including customers and co-workers,” added Ruhl.
  • Texting Mania: Employers are concerned that Millennials can’t get through a work day without texting their friends.
  • Inadequate Social and Interpersonal Skills: “Employers are apprehensive that Millennials do not have the social skills necessary to interface with clients and frequently perform poorly in face-to-face meetings, including job interviews. Many don’t know the meaning of ‘business casual’ and don’t have the etiquette skills to get through a business lunch,” said Ruhl.
  • Lack patience and persistence: Millennials are not known for their patience or their willingness to “pay their dues.”
  • Inappropriate social media content: Millennials may have questionable content on their social media sites including inappropriate photos, language and personal information.

Take a good, long, honest look at yourself. Do you fit this description? Some of it? Most of it? Finding, and holding, a job may not be tough because of the economy but because of you. Own up to it if this describes you and commit to make some changes in order to secure the job you want and create the future you’ve planned for yourself.

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About this Examiner: Kathryn Marion is the award-winning author of GRADS: TAKE CHARGE of Your First Year After College!, the most comprehensive resource for navigating the world of work and independent living after graduation, as well as host of the book’s companion resource site, www.GradsTakeCharge.com. The print edition of GRADS: TAKE CHARGE is available through Amazon and other online booksellers. The e-book edition is available through e-junkie.

Kathryn also coaches students, graduates, and career changers as well as consults with small businesses and aspiring authors.

Follow her other Examiner columns: Job Search and Life After College. And even more articles on SelfGrowth.com.

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