Look around you at the teenagers that make up Generation Y today. In 11 years’ time, these 13-19 year-olds will be the world’s newest generation of business travelers and purchasers of big-ticket items like houses, apartments and cars; at work, they’ll be operational decision makers as well as young managers influencing their employers’ big, strategic decisions. They will be voters with the potential to significantly alter the political landscape of their country and community.
In fact, there are probably only two areas of the economy in which they won’t be making major decisions themselves: education and (perhaps) healthcare. Education, because their own schooling will mostly be behind them, and the education of their children is yet to come. And healthcare, since they will be in their 20’s, so they will be in the prime of life, healthy and relatively unconcerned by medical issues.
And in just a few more years beyond our 11-year time horizon, they will be young parents, making family plans, purchases and investments.
In other words, in 11 years, today’s teenagers will be your customers, your employees and maybe even your bosses. What clues can we take from their current attitudes and behavior that could give us an idea how the world might change when they have become a more important force in the economy?.