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Axios reports on how the Millennial generation is facing both the opportunities and challenges of the new age of automation.

The story notes that “millennials — who disrupted our culture, stores and workplaces — now face their own coming upheaval.

“The millennial generation has the opportunity afforded by more tech than anyone prior.

“But prior technological revolutions have led to decades-long interregnums before real wages returned to prior levels. And those thrown out of work often had trouble finding new jobs.

“The new automation is tech on steroids. As time goes on, it will strike hard at blue-collar millennials — in cities and more rural parts of the country alike.”

The story points out that the very jobs that middle class and blue collar Americans used to count on are the ones being automated, and that millennials that have enjoyed the benefits of a digital revolution now will be facing realities increasingly difficult to navigate. “Part of that is economics - tech and globalization have hollowed out middle-skill, middle-wage jobs … And part of it is the continued aftermath of the financial crash.”
KC's View:
Scary stuff, and not just for millennials.

I’ve argued for a long time that helping people grapple with these changes is a matter of an effective, nuanced partnership between the public and private sectors - it isn’t just a matter of preparing people for new economic and technological realities, but preparing the nation.

It is important for retailers to embrace such initiatives, for lots of reasons - not least of which is the fact that if these folks are successful in their work (whatever that looks like as we move into the mid-21st century), then they’ll have money to spend at the store (whatever that looks like as we move into the mid-21st century).

Going backwards doesn’t strike me as an option.