How do credit unions engage with millennials as potential members? That is the $64,000 question. As we know, our membership is the generation that precedes the millennials (age range 18 to 30), which has a different outlook. From the traditionalists born between 1900 and 1945, baby boomers born from 1946 to 1964 and Generation X born from 1965 to 1980, they’re known for being suspicious coming from the age that experienced the Cold War, Vietnam, economic crises and health epidemics. “For the first time in history, four generations are working side by side. Different values, experiences, styles and activities create misunderstandings and frustrations,” wrote Lynne Lancaster and David Stillman in When Generations Collide.

Millennials have surpassed baby boomers as the nation’s largest living generation at 76 million, according to population estimates by the U.S. Census Bureau. Millennials are far less likely to be married than earlier generations were when they were young. Presently, 23% of 18- to 30-year-olds are married, Pew Research reports. Millennials are more highly educated than earlier generations and are viewing the inclination to major in high-demand subjects, i.e. business and health professions. Millennials will relocate after college to where the jobs are in order to pay for their student loan debt. Preceding generations would stay within the area they grew up in and would take a second, maybe a third, job to pay for college, a house and a family.

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