So in today’s post, I would absolutely love to touch on how my generation is ruining everything. This is something that has always been amusing for me to see, as I’m sure it is for most millennials. On the one hand, we have to ask, are we doing this intentionally? If so why? What did all these different markets do to hurt us so badly? What kind of confusing non-sense is this? Why would my generation be the one to kill everything that people love? Well, I’m here to break down some of the things that are considered to be “collapsing” because of millennials and give a hot take on why it’s taking place. To give you all a nice cited source, I’m going to pull the top ruined industries from an article on Business Insider. It’s back from October, so it’s a bit dated but will work for my discussion.
One of the first things that is listed in Business Insider’s article is the killing of restaurant chains, specifically cited is Buffalo Wild Wings and Applebees. According to Buffalo Wild Wings, the reason they’re hurting is because millennials enjoy eating at home or getting their food quickly while Applebees said that trying to cater to millennials hurt them. Looking at a different post from Business Insider, the writer seems to agree that the faster and more convenient places are to millennials, the more appeal there is. With this, I give them credit on being correct. They talk about this issue while also addressing the fact that changing technology and restaurants like Chipotle, which acts as a mix between fast food and restaurant, have drawn in millennial diners more. My main issue that I take with this is that it isn’t just millennials taking place in this behavior. This is a culture that has been established with the breakthrough in technology. I will also say that in personal experience, poor service and deals have also been an issue. There used to be a time when many of my friends and myself would go to a place like Buffalo Wild Wings and gorge ourselves on wings and beer while watching a sporting event. That changed as their prices went up and deals became mediocre. It got to a point where we decided only the lunch special was now worth going for. Why go someplace and spend close to $20 on food for yourself when buying a box of wings and a case of beer at the store and hosting at home is cheaper?
This leads to another industry that millennials are accused of hurting, which is beer. In a very entertaining article from Maxim, the author is upset about the fact that millennials ruin everything and are tanking beer. He laments and shows a chart of decline of beer and discusses how it isn’t fair millennials would kill an industry like that and believes the issue is due to marijuana being legalized. While this may be the case, my own theory goes a much simpler explanation: millennials are just more informed. This situation reminds me of how cigarettes worked. While beer isn’t quite as deadly as a cigarette, if you look back to the 60’s, cigarettes were popular due to the unknown health risks vs the societal norms. As researched emerged and proof came out they were bad for you, the industry saw a slow but steady decline. The same can be said for beer. Studies have shown that beer can lead to unwanted weight (hence the term “beer gut”) fills you with extra carbs, and more. This isn’t something millennials banned together to decide to destroy, it’s just something we’ve been educated on and decided not to pursue.
I could continue writing on this subject for days and while we’re killing so many industries, and trust me we’re supposedly killing a lot. Just a quick google search of the word millennial and you’ll find several articles up in arms about how my generation ruins everything. As much as I would love to defend us on all of these charges, I will instead just insist on a broad look of the world instead. One of the biggest things that I believe is happening is the general cultural shift due to technology. The internet, smart phones, and more have all lead to a need to have things faster and given people information at a quicker pace. When my generation has grown up with being able to search things on google, buy online, and offered all sorts of driving and delivery services, it’s no wonder these places have struggled. Let me be clear on something too: there is a healthy mix of problems for a lot of these places. Trying to cash in on quick trends isn’t the answer.
One solution that I’ve personally seen and thought worked well was at Home Depot and other retail stores that allow you to buy something on their app and pick up in store. This has allowed for these retailers to continue to sell their signature products but in the modern century. Upgrades like this, things to match the times will allow for these business to succeed. Those that don’t, or blame millennials are the ones in trouble. I can’t speak for my entire generation, but when I hear a company has pointed a finger at me and said “it’s my fault they’re closing” it leaves me less likely to do business with them again. Not to mention as someone that worked at a retailer that used this application of buy online, pick up in store, I can personally say most of the people using it were Xennials.
Moral of the story and this article is this: If you want to continue to succeed, maybe don’t blame the next generation for your company’s current shortcomings. Instead, look at the times and technology and see how your business or industry can either adapt or learn to perish.