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How to tap into millennials passion

The majority of youth ministry staff and volunteers would be labeled by sociologists as part of the millennial generation. (As opposed to our students, who are part of the digital generation.)

And, practically speaking, in order to make our ministry fly in our church/organization we need volunteers to pour themselves out and make an investment in our students. Many of us have discovered that this is a difficult task. We make pitches and we invite caring adults into our students lives and our first and second picks are typically too busy or over-committed. So we end up settling for people who are willing instead of people who might be the best fit. (That’s complicated and full of assumption, right?)

But my point is that to attract and keep the best people for our ministry we may need to examine how the generation we are asking to engage is motivated.

That’s exactly the point of a new study published by Barkley and sliced and diced by Carol Phillips of the University of Notre Dame. Here’s a couple of points from Carol’s summary which I thought were important to us leading youth groups.

  • Collaboration. The (sic) desire to connect with brands that share their passions is a key motivation, both online and offline.
  • Authenticity. The vast majority believe “Being True To Yourself” is inherently more influential in life (62%).
  • Involved. Making a differences lies in the cumulative effect of small decisions, little actions, not necessarily a big career accomplishment.
  • Influenced. 70 percent of Millennials reported feeling more excited when their friends agreed with them about where to shop, eat and play. Only 48 percent of older adults were as heavily influenced by their friends and colleagues.
  • Adventure. The large majority of Millennials (70 percent) want to visit every continent in their lifetime. Fewer than half of older adults report that goal.
What impact could these learning have on your ministry?
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4 thoughts on “How to tap into millennials passion

  1. […] How to tap into millennials passion The majority youth ministry staff and volunteers would be labeled by sociologists as part of the millennial generation. Source: […]

  2. Involved stands out to me. We oughta be about getting students involved in playing an active role in the youth group week in and week out. This sparks decision making, responsibility taking, and follow-up.

  3. Along with the “adventure” part I think is a mental adventure as well. That sounds really cheesy… but I think being able to ask huge questions and not immediately gravitating toward needing an answer is huge too. Questions about purpose and existence have been driving questions in some recent interactions I’ve had with youth and it opens both of us up to see a huge picture. It certainly has shades of adventure and involved in it, but I think being able to ask the big questions is key.

    1. I love this comment. So true.

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