As a part of an employment test, I was asked to highlight Top Three Trends that I observed in the youth today.
Let me share with you, a few of my observations.
The youth today have countless ways to express themselves.
Let’s not even look too far. Even if I take a time
horizon of say 5 years, the avenues have increased manifold since then. Other
than social networking sites, micro blogging sites, and blogging websites that
have been there for longer, proliferation of Blackberry messenger, social
networking sites that are accessible now from even the most basic of handsets
through WAP and GPRS, Android and iPhone apps like wattpad, instagram,
pinterest, pose, foursquare, the list is endless.
Nowadays, no matter where your interest lies, no matter
what your passion or hobby, you have a platform to get more information, learn
from others, showcase your talent and be known.
There is no such thing as privacy. There are a few who can resist the temptation
of posting a well-dressed picture of them, to know what others think; of
telling the world that they had a great party last night, irrespective of
whether the recipients are interested in knowing or not! Also, with all the
accounts and apps interconnected and interlinked, no online activity remains a
secret. The so-called friends are constantly updated about your whereabouts and
whatdoings, so much so that they no longer feel the need to meet.
They crave acceptance and
expression, there comes the need to be more liked amongst peers and even
amongst strangers. How many likes did my new puppy’s photo get? How many fans
do I have on wattpad? Follow me on twitter, I promise to retweet and follow you
back. I’m wearing a dress similar to Sonam Kapoor’s on the cover of that
magazine; does it make me look fat? You get the drift.
With busy lifestyles and fast pace of life, relationships are becoming more virtual in
It is more about the Quantity of
friends rather than the Quality of friends.
They youth today is more aware
With increased literacy, stress on higher education as
well as the easy and quick availability of information, the youth are more
aware and savvy than what their parents or grandparents used to be. They not
only know what is happening around them, but also have a fair idea of the
ongoing topics around the world.
They are aware of their rights and
therefore demand more,
not only from the government, but also from the goods and service providers.
They do not settle for less. They hate delays. They are restless, and anybody
who takes time to respond to them loses business.
They are also aware of various environmental and health
issues and therefore, they seek out products and services that are healthy and
sustainable in nature. There is also a sense
of responsibility to give back to the society.
They want to be drivers of change and their decisions are more informed rather than
impulse on most issues.
Increased awareness also comes with the zeal to do
something nobody has ever done before, and therefore, we see a sleuth of new and innovative goods and services.
And this is not just limited to a personal or
professional front. Let’s take parenting
as an example. Nowadays parenting is also done in a well informed manner.
Unlike our growing up years where parents merely sent us to school and tuition
class, today’s parents are placing a lot of importance on all round
development. With easy access to information and many vocational classes to
choose form, it’s not too difficult.
Offbeat and unheard of occupations
are becoming fruitful sources of employment. For example, many people are actually devoting
themselves managing high profile weddings. Gone are the days when a photographer
was somebody at a studio, who shot photos of you against colorful backgrounds.
Fashion, wildlife, wedding, product and food photography are just some of the
various subcategories in photography that are becoming full-time professions.
Saving is replaced by spending
One of the major reasons India survived the 2008
recession was the fact that we are a saving population. Credit card usage is
limited and we do not believe in frivolity when it comes to finances. The
strict patriarch makes most of the spending decisions and the women have to
adhere to a budget. But I don’t think
India will be able to boast of this habit for too long.
Let me explain. With the current conditions of our
economy, which is characterized by the increase in dollar, high inflation and
interest rates, even the basic necessities are becoming dearer. The incomes,
however, continue to grow at a snail’s pace.
common man is faced with the dilemma- save or eat. He obviously chooses the
latter and thus, his savings remain stagnant. He may have to even withdraw some
his savings in order to survive.
Things don’t look happier for even the comparatively well-to-do lot. With rising real estate
and gold prices, he has limited avenues of investment. Buying a house in a city
like Mumbai is well beyond reach of an average income man. So is gold and
silver for this risk-averse lot. Taking cue from a recessionary study that
reported a rise in lipstick sales amongst women who sought ‘gratification from
purchasing’; the average man may resort to developing a mindset of “Live for
the day” since a splurging on a home or jewelry is anyway going to be way
The high income
group is anyway famed to be the splurging lot.
To add to this, we have a rise in consumerism, international
standard products and services, increased advertising and customer service that
all entice an unassuming customer to buy, and buy some more, often more than he
needs or can afford.
Also, a rise in youth population, higher working class,
women in the workforce have generated new
and unique needs such a crèche facilities, meal services, recreation
facilities, health insurance, etc. that tend to usurp a major chunk of one’s
income. Saving is bare minimum.
Sigh, that took me a lot of thinking.
Please do share your opinions, as well as your observations.