Millennials…the 1,000-Hour Pro Generation

I know, I know. Millennials. You saw that in the title and thought, “Great, another article about this generation.” But kudos to you for clicking, anyway. I think your click will be worth it!

Indeed, I am a millennial, and I might even fit some of the stereotypes that come with that. The 1,000-Hour Pro is a millennial idea, after all, and maybe that’s not the worst thing. Let’s have a go.

Millennials are…disinterested.

Disinterested in what exactly is always my question? Disinterested in graduating college with a STEM degree, getting a 9-5 that we stick with for 40 years, retiring and calling it good? Well, I guess I’d agree with that.

We’re a disinterested generation if it comes to sticking to the status quo, living the “American Dream” or just going down the same path as those before us. That doesn’t make us disinterested in the world around us or in making a difference. Au contraire.

Millennials are the 1,000-Hour Pros. The millennial wants more than just their “thing.” That’s why we’re putting “side hustle” on the map. Millennials want their life to make a difference and that means doing a lot of different things. That means working a lot of different jobs to see which one scratches each itch. One of those itches is the desire to make a difference. Millennials are stereotyped as being disinterested and uncaring, but this generation is motivated about social issues and changing the world for the better.

Our entire lives, we millennials have watched as the face of the planet has changed thanks to the Internet, cell phones, Web 2.0, the list goes on and on, and that hasn’t made us feel like we just get to continue to watch. We want in on the action!

We so badly want in on that world change that we’re trying all kinds of different things to find a way to make an impact. We’re learning all kinds of new skills and taking a stab in many different fields. We’re becoming 1,000-Hour Pros because we’re disinterested in the status quo. We’re interested in making a difference no matter what area that may be in.

Millennials are…entitled

Often called the “trophy generation,” critics of millennials say we think we deserve a trophy just for showing up to work and participating. If that’s your view of this generation, I’m sorry because you’re encountering some pretty terrible (and rare) millennials.

The millennials I know and work with feel entitled to more in life. We don’t want to be handed just a simple life of clock-punching and task-mastering. We know there’s more out there for us, and we feel like we deserve to experience that.

I don’t think millennials are wrong either, in that regard. Over the course of our lifetime, we’ve been exposed to more and more of the world. Starting with the first iterations of the internet to the now interconnectedness of our relationships on social media, knowledge bases in “the cloud” and economies in the global market, millennials have had a first row seat to watch the whole world open up in front of us. Can you blame us for wanting to take hold of that?

We’ve seen the world and all its nooks and crannies at the tips of our fingers, so we’ve wanted to explore more and more of those. The millennial is the 1,000-Hour Pro just by existing in this global market of knowledge. No one can be expected to just want to focus in on one thing when we know there’s so much more out there for us to learn!

The millennial and 1,000-Hour Pro do feel entitled, but that entitlement is for more. That entitlement is feeling the right to chase rabbit trails and discover all that’s out there for us.

• • • • •

Now these are just two of the things I hear about our generation that the 1,000-Hour Pro is combatting. If you have any other thoughts, I’d love to hear them! What are some other stereotypes of millennials that the 1,000-Hour Pro is taking head on?


7 thoughts on “Millennials…the 1,000-Hour Pro Generation

  1. Cool article. Helped me see outside of the box.

    I’m not a millennal.. close though…

    Just a few questions…

    How can you lead millennals? If everything you say in your article is true then their focus would remain solely on a few jobs “side hustle” thus making them hard to lead. As an organization that must work together how can I lead them to achieve more without asking them to be different? Btw… I don’t want them to be…

    Also what happens to the millennal that never find that itch? What happens if they don’t feel like that are making a difference.

    As a pastor at Crosspoint church , a Missions organization founder( and owner operator of Traditions Woodcraft I know that I have to be a better leader or the Millennals will leave me behind…



    1. I think one of the biggest things in leading millennials is caring about them and what they care about. As a generation, we are passionate about a lot of things, and when other people get behind those, we feel empowered and legitimate.

      I also think that leading with vision is huge for millennials. We love causes and making a difference, so if we don’t know the importance of our work to the greater vision of making a difference, we won’t respond well. But with a purpose and a difference to be made, we’ll jump on board and give our all.


      1. I like that. I won’t forget it. I hope that I can put action behind it.

        See if you can put an answer to these for me. Also what happens to the millennal that never find that itch? What happens if they don’t feel like that are making a difference?

        What are you passionate about?


      2. Some millennials might not find that itch in your organization, but I think being a good coach/mentor/leader means helping those people find their sweet spot, which is sometimes elsewhere. If millennials don’t feel they’re making a difference, they’ll oftentimes turn to side hustle or another organization entirely to find that.

        I think what I’m passionate about is still being revealed! I love writing and have really enjoyed the couple of opportunities I’ve had to speak. I’m super passionate about excellence and creativity in the church world. I think we should be leading the way in the world for making great art. And I think golf needs a mention 🙂


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