What Millennial in their right mind would seriously consider a career in the printing industry? There seems to be no place to hide from the preconceived notion of print being an outdated media that’s run by old-school companies who are going downhill. As a 26 year old who has been involved in print since 16, I have experienced my share of career scrutiny everywhere from family gatherings to young professional networking events.
There is no denying it that Millennials are shaking up the workplace as we know it. They bring a completely different set of expectations and are eagerly seeking out the most innovative companies that are experts at tailoring to their needs. I am here to provide insight on why I feel my generation should take another look at the printing industry or they may miss out on a tremendous career path. I also provide suggestions on what printing companies can do today to help close their talent gap and attract Millennials.
Aging Workforce = Career Advancement Opportunities
There is no hiding it that the printing industry faces a major shortage of young talent to replace the current generation that is right around the corner from retirement. It also just so happens that one of the highest workplace priorities for Millennials is the opportunity to develop quickly and advance.
- Millennial Opportunity: Dedicating time to learning the business will put you in high demand. Many print shop owners’ biggest problems are that they want to retire but can’t find a young talent pool to take over. This is a unique chance to utilize a niche that can put you on the fast track of upward development.
- Print Company Call to Action: Start to develop relationships with colleges that offer Graphic Communications programs. Providing rotational internships is critical to drawing in young talent and securing future employment. Being present at their job fairs is a way to be directly in front of the graduating class and be sure to think outside the box when it comes to offering benefits. Something as simple as free bi-weekly food trucks or a happy hour social can go a long way.
Directly Influence the “It’s all about me” Experience
The “it’s all about me” stigma that follows Millennials has a lot in common with the printing industry. The rapid growth of digital printing came from the ability to cost-effectively offer “one-to-one” printed pieces that truly stand out and cater to the specific recipient.
- Millennial Opportunity: You know better than any other generation what the expectations are when it comes to having communications successfully provide relevancy and spark an interest. Many printing companies are still stuck in offering “one-to-many” static communications. You bring a huge value in being able to educate printing companies on what’s relevant in today’s marketplace and help manage their transition to the new norm.
- Print Company Call to Action: There is no denying it that marketing has changed. Now more than ever, print is under attack from a variety of other communication outlets that are very successful at gaining attention and creating a response. Having a Millennial on your marketing or sales team offers a taste of reality of what your customers are looking for and they can be instrumental in helping make such offerings possible.
What are your thoughts on the up and coming generation? How do you try to break down the stereotype that follows print? It’s an interesting topic and I would love to continue the conversation with your feedback.