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Millennials make their mark at NEW Phoenix event

Thursday, May 1, 2014  
Posted by: Barbara Francella
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More than 100 NEW members took a look into the future of workplace leadership at the NEW Phoenix spring learning event April 25, 2014 at Crescent Crown Distributing in Mesa, Ariz.

Courtney Klein, co-founder of Seed Spot; Rachel Mushahwar, vice president, IT enterprise applications for PetSmart, Inc.; Marquis Scott, director of internships at Grand Canyon University; and Roman Wroclawski, a consultant with Slalom Consulting, shared their views on the "Millennial Perspective in the Workforce” during a panel discussion moderated by Andy Izquierdo, PetSmart Inc.’s vice president, corporate affairs.

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Millennials view themselves as cause-oriented change agents, who are less cognizant of limits than previous generations, the panelists agreed.

"Millennials open up the world to ideas that were previously inconceivable,” Scott said. "Nothing is impossible.”

This ambition, however, can pose workplace challenges, especially in a workforce led by Baby Boomers who tend to prefer traditional work environments and hours. Millennials are more focused on results, attained with flexible, all-hours scheduling and little division between work and life.

The ability to work together is important for all generations, Wroclawski, who is a Millennial, said. "We are people solving people problems, so we need people” to collaborate.

Klein said key to collaboration is remembering that everyone is a individual. By building authentic relationships with individuals, we can all "break down the barriers between generations, because we are all imperfect.”

The workplace will be a much more diverse environment in the future. Mushahwar’s children, she noted, experience a culturally diverse childhood that "is their ‘normal.’”

Workplaces need to celebrate the inclusion — and promotion — of minorities and women, Wroclawski said. "Look at the differences not to separate, but take the good and use it to inspire change for good.”

Tad McKnight of DS-IQ, Sonja Locken and Linda Schaumburg of Valassis
enjoyed learning and networking at the NEW Phoenix learning event.

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