November 14, 2016

Millennials: A Digital Native and Content-Sharing Generation

Written by Shina Neo

Millennials Learning - A Digital Native and Content Sharing Generation.jpg

With the influx of millennials in our workforce, successful organizations are leveraging learning technologies to meet the needs of today’s content sharing generation. The constant use of technologies and increase in social engagement with comments, likes and tweets, have dominated the way we consume information, interact with others and conduct business. Learning and development leaders are starting to recognize how critical social sharing and engagement is for organizational success.

According to a study conducted by Pew Research Center, 62 percent of U.S. adults get their news on social media. More specifically, Facebook is the largest social networking site, reaching 67 percent of U.S. adults, of which 44 percent get their news from the site. In terms of next greatest reach, although YouTube reaches a higher general usage than Twitter, more than half of the Twitter population gets their news from the site. 

Millennials constantly seek value in what they do in terms of both personal and professional development. By connecting with like-minded individuals, sharing content and engaging with subject matter experts, social sharing and engagement is one of the driving forces transforming corporate learning and development. In addition, today’s digital native generation is learning at the speed of search. The need to have access to the right information, at the right time is crucial for a positive learning experience. Especially with the abundance of digital information available, it is essential to implement an effective search functionality that is optimized for efficient learning, saving time and increasing productivity.  

The ability to create content, search online and share information socially is key to understanding the millennial mindset. In order to keep millennials engaged, organizations need to leverage learning technologies, embrace a BYOD strategy and enable social learning, not only through in-person collaboration, but also through social platforms.

According to Harvard Business Review, “neuroscientists have shown that any kind of positive personal interaction lights up a part of the brain called the temporoparietal junction, which stimulates the production of oxytocin.” Seeing as millennials have grown up in a digital environment and interacting online is simply part of their daily life, it is evident that connecting through social channels and engaging with others through posting, commenting and sharing content essentially increases levels of oxytocin. That said, happy employees results in higher levels of retention, engagement and productivity, resulting in a positive return on investment.

As businesses continue to transition from traditional instructor-led training (ILT) to a blended learning experience, the increasing presence of virtual classrooms, and online training and courses is changing the way we learn and do business. Online social learning provides opportunities for creating learning networks, sharing information resources, and collaborating with subject matter experts. Successful organizations embrace a millennial mindset when designing, developing and delivering learning strategies that not only meet the needs of individual learners, but also promote a learning culture based on social sharing, collaboration and engagement.


Comment below and tell us how your organization tailors learning experiences to millennials. 




Shina Neo

Shina Neo is the content marketing manager at Content Raven where she is responsible for the publication of all blog posts, white papers, eBooks, infographics and social media campaigns. Previously, Shina worked as a news reporter and has written for numerous newspapers and magazines nationwide. She holds a Masters of Science in Journalism from Boston University.

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