I am so tired of hearing about how millennials are lazy, have been coddled by their parents and, in effect, lack the initiative and self-awareness to be successful in the workplace. As the average age of wealth management professionals continues to increase, firms that don’t prioritize attracting and retaining millennial talent will get left in the dust by competitors.
First off, these are extreme blanket statements to make about a generation of roughly 75 million people, recently surpassing the Baby Boomers as the largest generation in the United States. If this criticism were really true, that'd mean there are a lot of lazy, unmotivated Americans. It's not representative of the majority.
Here in New York City, where the job market tends to be ruthless and demanding, I have found this younger generation to be adaptable, optimistic and, above all, hard-working.
The vast majority of my registered investment advisory (RIA) firm, Payne Capital Management, is made up of millennials. Furthermore, in an industry dominated by male Baby Boomers, we stand in stark contrast, especially when you consider the majority of our team of young financial advisers happen to be women. While our male advisers are great too, some of the key advantages we have discovered in employing millennial women include:
1. Organization: I've found that millennial women are exceptionally proficient at building systems and structures to keep on top of their responsibilities in the face of the daily chaos that defines the modern workplace. I remember my first job out of college and just how disorganized and undisciplined I was with managing my business and the day-to-day tasks I was responsible for. This generation’s organizational skills put me to shame.
2. Discipline: Being a skilled financial planner is all about creating a plan and sticking to it. Our female advisers tend to be remarkably disciplined when following an investment strategy, no matter how volatile and emotional our clients and markets become. Providing clients with this type of restraint and focus is critical in building successful wealth management plans for them.
3. Collaboration: Unlike many companies where internal strife and competition are not only prevalent but encouraged, our millennial women advisors tend to be more interested in working together and collectively helping to make the major decisions that shape our firm. Everybody makes a conscious effort to help one another succeed. In fact, there is a real sense that the firm's success equates to everyone’s individual success.
We were named to the 2016 Inc. 5000 List of America's Fastest-Growing Companies, and the millennials we’ve hired have made a positive impact on our business. It’s time for financial services professionals to put aside tired stereotypes and embrace the generation of young workers who bring a unique skill set to the table.
Ryan Payne is the president and co-founder of Payne Capital Management and a former financial adviser at Merrill Lynch.
Photo credit: nd3000/GettyImages