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What Accounts For The Rise Of The Nomad Generation?

A lot of generalist is labeling the Millenial generation as the digital nomad generation.  Now, depending on how you look at it, this can easily be construed as a slur or some sort of bashing, but if you look at the demographic shifts that underline such statement. This is actually a very significant shift in demographic work patterns, attitudes, and ultimately success outcomes.

In other words, the young people who see themselves jumping from job to job, country to country, as well as income stream to income stream; don’t really look at themselves as tied to one setting.  Now, for older generations, this may come off as a sign of lack of ambition, confusion, and lack of clarity.  In their minds, people who do this are essentially drifters and don’t really have a purpose in life.

Well, that’s reading too much of the demographic shift because if you think about it closely and if you were in the same age range as them, you would clearly understand that there is a massive economic reason for doing this.  Gone are the days where you can leave college with a diploma and find a job and count on the fact that you would be on that job until you retire.

I’m talking about 30-40 years.  That, rarely happens.  In fact, the typical college graduate in the United States today can look forward to at least 6 to even 20 different jobs in the span of their lifetime.  The Millenial generation understands this.  That’s why they are not fooled by the old assurances of steady or lifelong employment; unless the Millenial involve is thinking about a career in government.

Most Millenials see that there are no guarantees as far as occupational stability as well as career advancement.  That’s why they took it to the next level.  A lot of them are freelancing.  Most of them are opening startups that are very mobile in nature.  This is really a positive thing.  They get it because that kind of lifestyle, the digital nomad lifestyle really matches the changing economic undertones that are being disrupted by technology coming out of Silicon Valley and elsewhere.

Make no mistake about it.  There were a lot of jobs destroyed by the rise of the mobile phone and guess what, with the rise of artificial intelligence and in particular machine learning, there will be millions of jobs from all over the world vaporized almost overnight.

If you are looking for low hanging fruit in terms of jobs that are slated for obsolescence and destruction, look no further than your nearest call center and transcription outfit.  Back in the day, high school graduate in the United States can actually earn a decent middle class living by being a call center agent.  Either they process customer service support calls or they access databases regarding customer inquiries.  In other words, they were part of the total customer fulfillment process that ensures maximum value per customer unit.

Thanks to machine learning.  You only need one call center representative instead of a thousand and the software listens in, regularizes, systemathizes, and comes up with alternative scenarios to essentially multiply the range of situations a service call applies to.

This is some scary stuff, but it’s also very fascinating because with one customer interaction, machine learning can make certain predictions so that the calls that it handles no longer needs a human component because it does the job, the right way the first time around by making the right predictions.  Once it does, it sticks to that and then tries to make another and stick to those if they pan out and so on and so forth.

Now, you can see why an office building that houses, let’s say 500 call center employees can actually be to a quarter of a floor.  That is maximum employment.  Given these realities, a lot of todays Millenial generations are becoming digital nomads.  They live in smaller houses, they rent, and they go from place to place, and their living is from social media, blogging, data consulting, in other words, think of the robot trainers instead of the people displaced by the robots.

Millenials are not stupid.  They can see the handwriting on the wall.  They have adjusted their lifestyle accordingly.  It’s only people from older generations who can hide behind the comfort and assurance of social security and pensions; who can look at them with a judging eye, but if you were to look at the situation from their perspective, they’re definitely spot on.  That is the essence of the digital nomad lifestyle.