Wednesday, July 26, 2017

iGens: What You Need to Know About the Next Generation of Lawyers - NATIONAL LAW REVIEW

by Sue Remley
Originally published: July 24, 2017

Just as law firms are finally beginning to acknowledge and try to respond to the differences that millennial lawyers introduce to a firm, watch out … iGen is waiting in the wings to further stir up the mix. What is iGen? It’s another name for Generation Z, or the generation born after millennials.

iGen is the most recently recognized generation. They are cloud natives rather than digital natives, generally categorized as being born in 1996 and after, and do not have a first-hand memory of 9/11. Many are still adolescents, so their adult characteristics haven’t fully developed. But please do not take them for granted. There are currently more than 23 million iGens in the United States and, within the next five years, they will become the fastest-growing generation in both the workplace and the marketplace. Prepare to move over, millennials!

The “big deal” about iGens is that they are tremendously more diverse than any other recognized generation. They do not always define themselves by a specific race, ethnicity, sexual orientation or cultural imperative. Many of iGens’ parents did not define themselves via socially approved parameters so, they, unknowingly, created a much-more-diverse American culture. The iGens diversity will have a profound impact on employers in the coming years. Imagine a fully diversified law firm … that may be your law firm in the next couple of decades.