Clinician's Digest

Clinician's Digest

Therapists Answer the Millennial Question

March/April 2017

Simon Sinek reclines in a black leather chair around a small semicircle of mostly 20- and 30-somethings. “I have yet to give a speech or have a meeting where somebody doesn’t ask me the Millennial Question,” he tells Tom Bilyeu, host of the online talk show Inside Quest. Millennials, referring to young adults born in 1984 and afterward, he clarifies, confound their older workplace associates, who aren’t sure how to help this tough-to-manage generation function better. Millennials, he continues, “are accused of being entitled—and narcissistic, self-interested, unfocused, lazy. But entitled is the big one. They’re saying, ‘We want to work in a place with purpose; we want to make an impact’—whatever that means.” The camera pans around the room to nods, smiles, and a few chuckles from the audience. “‘We want free food,’” he continues, “‘and bean bags.’” More laughs.

Sinek knows a thing or two about generating buzz. Since his bestseller Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action hit bookshelves in 2009, followed shortly by a TED talk on the same subject—currently with more than 5.7 million views on YouTube—the 43-year-old motivational speaker and marketing consultant has spent the past eight years tapping into the public’s curiosity about what makes a great leader, a great workplace, and a well-rounded, happy life. And he’s struck gold. Since Start with Why, he’s authored two other bestsellers, several online courses, and…

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