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6 Leadership Lessons I've Learned from Millennials

As I'm learning from Millennials, I'm finding hope for the future.
5. Millennial Women have Creative and Service-Oriented Approaches to Work

Since this generation can’t expect to walk straight out of college and into a career, many young women are finding creative ways to reimagine work, setting aside the traditional “career as personal brand” approach and seeing their life’s work as a way to serve. This may mean they’re willing to cobble together a few different jobs to make it work. Others create jobs for themselves—like creating an app or starting an Etsy store—and continue to fit some volunteering in there, too.

6. Millennial Women are Pioneering New Gender Roles

Since this generation has seen their mothers’ (and perhaps grandmothers’) generation stepping into new roles, they’ve had a chance to learn from both the positive and negative examples of pioneering women. So Millennial women are often less reactionary than previous generations of women and are finding healing from stereotypes. They often don’t feel the need for exclusive women’s ministries but are comfortable in mixed groups and long to find healing between men and women.

For Millennials, the way the world is heading is the only world they know—a more global, connected, diverse, risky place. Many of us in middle age look on it with uncertainty because we remember a more predictable time. But we have much to learn from these young women who look on it with hope. The things Millennials are dealing with are not passing trends but seismic cultural shifts taking place—changes that affect education, work, immigration, the family, the economy, and the institutional church, to name just a few. As much as we might lament some of these realities, Millennials are not afraid. So I’m following their lead on how to navigate a changing world with creativity and hope.

Mandy Smith is lead pastor of University Christian Church in Cincinnati, Ohio, and author of The Vulnerable Pastor.

October17, 2016 at 11:44 AM

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