It’s the final weekend in this year’s American Idol competition. The two finalists are the youngest ever, Scotty McCreery (17) and Lauren Alaina (16), and they are genuine Gen Yers.
They both sing the down home country style music of the American south. They’re family friendly, grounded and confident beyond belief. Lauren’s final song – the one she would have released as a single had she won – was an ode to her mother. The judges were quick to label her song the best song of the final show, and reiterate the fact that “Moms are the bedrock of America for kids right now” (so said judge Steven Tyler, frontman of Aerosmith). That’s a defining characteristic of this generation.
Scotty’s song began: “I know I am still young, but I know how I feel. I might not have too much experience, but I know that love is real.” That’s this young millennial generation (Generation Y) through and through.
We’ve written lots about this generation, and have been warning employers for years that they’re “coming soon to an office near you”. If anyone still doesn’t quite know what we’re talking about, then American Idol just gave you a great visual case study.