Why Millennials Are Missing Out On Communication

By Reez Ndukwe

Image credit: Hobo.Video

Millennials are a category of young adults within the current ages of 25-40 yrs or born between 1981 to 1996. This human generation is of interest because they are the dominant demographic in the workforce today. We applaud their wits on the usage of technology, the internet, and social media. They use it in order to advance the world positively into what we see. Because of them, they have been a change in our mode of social interactions with everything online; even the age-old art of branding.

These days we prefer ‘instant messaging’ to invite near and dear to an event instead of phone calls. We share a thoughtful or funny picture, comment, or video to others online as a way to express. We tweet to give our viewpoints and so on. Due to immense online activities and social media engagements, millennials have gradually lost touch with interpersonal communication with one another.

Even when we manage to meet together, our eyes remain glued to our mobile phones. 

People of Generation Y or otherwise called the Millennials may have turned out to be one of the most intelligent generations to come around in human history. But their widespread digitalization and their tech-savvy abilities pose a critical weakness. It is the lack of communicative skill. Yes, millennials might have undoubtedly have made daily life a bit convenient and certain luxuries a bit more accessible to the common man. But they are missing out on the most crucial facet of communication – simple old face-to-face conversation.

As simple as this skill may seem from a bird’s view, it has plagued the Millennials and is prone to do the same to the current upcoming Generation Z whereby lack of human interaction will trigger social isolation amongst many youths and eventually lead to debilitating effects. We at Hobo.Video believes that there are three main reasons why millennials and Gen Z are missing out on the benefits of face-to-face communication. Knowing these three benefits will help us appreciate the need to practice more physical face time to screen time.

The Process Of Clearly Passing Out Of Information For Millennials

On one Friday morning, an intern was arriving at the workplace and her boss was hurriedly stepping out of the office when he said; “I’ll do my big work and still have to do your small task. And then you’ll go on a wild goose chase”. She felt hurt at heart and helped him carry some of the files he was holding. Further, she couldn’t help her emotions and then cried while they were walking at a fast pace. She was later approached by her boss and the 52-year-old man realized that she had misunderstood his comment earlier that day.

The above statement was not insulting but meant that “you should take more responsibility for your duties and make sure of the more important things”. It is worthy to note that the ability to filter through spoken words, millennials need to understand what is being said, and interpret the gold nuggets in them is now a genius-level ability in this current generation.

Image Source: PixaBay

What is even more compelling?

It is that business executives may use indirect terms or implied expressions in the hopes that the other party understands the communication. The obligations and expectations of a commercial contract may go sour. This is because the accustomed use of emails and chat apps has replaced the art of clearly passing out information.

As more and more transactions take place online, the quality and sense of the character of most products and services are gradually declining. And at the end of the day, people buy stuff largely based on emotions and minimally based on logic. For this reason, focusing only on product features without maintaining good marketing messages evades a chance to gain trust for the Millennials. So in terms of business transactions, getting to know the business and personal situations of clients (by open communication) would help build better long-term relationships.

Social media platforms are full of young individuals

These millennials say things they do not mean at heart. They confess romantic feelings that are not felt and acknowledge things they do not know. Young adults who do not like traditional face-to-face communication always receive the blows. With physical face-to-face conversation, one can truly and naturally pass on information. Further, without having to edit and re-edit a comment even for the most trivial matters. The result is that younger generations will always need to think something over before speaking, and so they will err out their viewpoints in a genuine way. Also, if an issue was spoken wrongly or in an inappropriate way, they will be corrected and learn from it.

The Art Of Listening Attentively And Learning Informally For Millennials

Because many millennials spend about, they often feel the need for attention and quality time to verbally express themselves. When the chance to talk with such ones arise, they lord over the whole conversation, making everything to be about themselves and not give others the ample chance to talk. Everyone can relate to people like this, and how they would not listen carefully to another viewpoint unless it is their own. The Dopamine rush of having to type fast in seconds and reply to a message as quickly as possible has not helped people become good listeners in a real conversation. Once that thrill is over, they are often found to have a short attention span that makes them poor listeners.

Unlike online instant messaging interactions, face-to-face conversation fosters keen learning.  The simple truth is everybody has something to teach us despite how much knowledge we think we might have on a subject. So, in order to truly learn from one another, we must in all settings (formal or informal) learn to diligently listen to others; actively engage and ask questions; show curiosity and gratitude for others’ experiences. Not much of this can be well achieved by messaging, emailing, or voice calls. Those who win friends and influence people listen attentively to the concerns and opinions of others. Learning useful skills from older men and women that will serve one throughout the rest of adulthood is the catalyst for self-development for millennials, which is necessary to be successful. However, learning something requires effective communication.

The Art Of Non-Verbal Communication And Persuasion For Millennials

It is no secret that you can never recreate a person’s facial expressions and psychological clues in digital format. Physical proximity is directly related to interpersonal connection and how you actually feel about somebody. An individual’s smile, smell, eye contact, body posture, and so on can help you interpret intentions or suggest personality type. All of the latter are part of being ‘psychologically literate’ and this acumen is not too hard to acquire. Remember that 93% of how we communicate with each other is through our non-verbal communication. Therefore, when millennials do not interact face-to-face, they inevitably lose out on determining what a person’s true intentions are; they cease being ‘psychologically literate’. 

Image Source: PixaBay

This is observed in how young gentlemen have lost their form in communicating with ladies to the extent that there are numerous trainings online that teach through learning-by-doing interactive activities. 

Not only this- inconspicuous observations such as where one’s hands are rested on their body; where people’s feet are pointing; pupil and facial muscle minor contractions, can also signal so many key psychological messages. Without a degree in Human Psychology, one who converses with regular people on a daily will see patterns in people’s behaviors and manners. Interestingly, the term “congruence” as used in the field of body language reveals that we may be able to ascertain people’s intentions by observing how their verbal message matches their body language. The truth is – when adults are able to extract these non-verbal cues, they are also more able to determine the emotionality, flaws, and strengths of others, and thus, they influence the other person through refining their own body language and conversational skills.


In short, you should throw out all ‘new-school terms and instead think of them as interactions. In what way? Instead of ‘engagement’ on a social media post, You as a millennial or Gen Z should have a conversation. Instead of ‘likes,’ you should call someone and empathetically ask how they are doing with the reassurance that you care. And instead of ‘connections’ or ‘networking,’ you should have conversations with friends. This may sound bizarre, but sometimes it’s necessary to be reminded of the core roots to why we all went digital in the first place– to make the world a better place.

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