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For a preview of The Trophy Kids Grow Up, read an adaptation on The Wall Street Journal Web site.

About the Author

Ron AlsopRon Alsop is a freelance writer and editor for websites, magazines and newspapers. He also does public speaking and consulting engagements on generational issues in the workplace, business education trends and corporate reputation management. A longtime reporter and editor for The Wall Street Journal, he is the author of eight books, including his latest, The Trophy Kids Grow Up: How the Millennial Generation Is Shaking Up the Workplace. His other books include The Wall Street Journal Guide to the Top Business Schools and The 18 Immutable Laws of Corporate Reputation: Creating, Protecting, and Repairing Your Most Valuable Asset. He also has served as editor of the Journal’s Marketplace page and its annual ranking of M.B.A. programs. A graduate of Indiana University, he lives in Summit, N.J.

The Trophy Kids Grow Up

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The first wave of the Millennial Generation—born between 1980 and 2001—is entering the work force, and employers are facing some of the biggest management challenges they’ve ever encountered. They are trying to integrate the most demanding and most coddled generation in history into a workplace shaped by the driven baby-boom generation. Like them or not, the millennials are America's future work force. They are actually a larger group than the boomers—92 million vs. 78 million.

The millennials are truly trophy kids, the pride and joy of their parents who remain closely connected even as their children head off to college and enter the work force. Millennials are a complex generation, with some conflicting characteristics. Although they’re hard working and achievement oriented, most millennials don’t excel at leadership and independent problem solving. They want the freedom and flexibility of a virtual office, but they also want rules and responsibilities to be spelled out explicitly. “It’s all about me,” might seem to be the mantra of this demanding bunch of young people, yet they also tend to be very civic-minded and philanthropic.

This book will let readers meet the millennials and learn how this remarkable generation promises to stir up the workplace and perhaps the world. It provides a rich portrait of the millennials, told through the eyes of millennials themselves and from the perspectives of their parents, educators, psychologists, recruiters, and corporate managers. Clearly, the millennials represent a new breed of student, worker, and global citizen, and this book explores in depth their most salient attributes, particularly as they are playing out in the workplace. It also describes how companies are changing tactics to recruit millennials in the Internet age and looks at some of this generation’s dream jobs.

Praise for The Trophy Kids Grow Up

“Ron Alsop provides the definitive guide to attracting talent—with this most in-depth, balanced, and clearly articulated description of the generation now choosing where to write their next personal success story.”
Robert J. Dolan, dean, Stephen M. Ross School of Business, University of Michigan

“In The Trophy Kids Grow Up, Ron Alsop has done his homework to understand what makes this remarkably talented generation tick. This thorough and insightful work will serve as the guidebook for those looking to win in the war for talent.”
Matthew Bennett, director of global recruiting, Oliver Wyman General Management Consulting

“Drawing on years of reporting experience, as well as current research on the subject, Ron Alsop provides a clear and compelling picture of the millennial generation. This book will yield insights for anyone who interacts with today’s teens and twentysomethings— educators and administrators, corporate recruiters and managers, marketers, fundraisers, and nonprofit executives alike.”
Joel Podolny, dean and William S. Beinecke professor of management, Yale School of Management

“Ron Alsop’s The Trophy Kids Grow Up looks beyond the campus gates to see how today’s young people are changing the work force and the very nature of work itself. Parents who want a good return on their education investment should read this book and apply its lessons to the emerging young adults in their household.”
James A. Boyle, president, College Parents of America

“As organizations go global and continue to diversify, it will be critical to further understand the millennial generation in order to successfully recruit, retain, and develop the best talent. Ron Alsop delivers an insightful, down-to-earth read on Gen Y and proves why we can’t afford to overlook their attitudes, ambitions, and behaviors. The Trophy Kids Grow Up is a must-read for educators and employers alike.”
Frank Brown, dean, INSEAD Business School