Millennials have surpassed Baby Boomers as the nation’s largest living generation, according to population estimates by the U.S. Census Bureau. Millennials, born in the years 1981–1997, now number 75.4 million, surpassing the 74.9 million Baby Boomers (born 1946 – 1964). No matter what you think about Millennials they are influencing our products, our rate of technology adaptation, our values, and our workplace culture. It is time to crack the code if you haven’t already as they are your future.

Millennial characteristics vary by region, but members of this generation have an increased use and familiarity with communications, media, and digital technologies. In most parts of the world, their upbringing was marked by an increase in a liberal approach to politics and economics, and the Great Recession has had a major impact on them because it caused high levels of unemployment early in their working lives.

They are perceived to delay typical rites of passage into adulthood such as moving out from their parents’ homes, getting married, starting a career, or buying a home.  They are part of a “shared economy” that embraces new business models such as airbnb or uber.  Data from a 2014 study of US Millennials revealed over 56% of this cohort considers themselves part of the working class, with only approximately 35% considering themselves as part of the middle class; this class identity is the lowest polling of any US generation.

Does your business strategy account for millennials?  It should.