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What it Really Means When Millennials “Kill” an Industry

Jason Dorsey sheds light on how certain industries fail to adapt to changing needs

It seems there’s a new headline every day about Millennials “killing” a different industry. According to some hyperbolic articles, Millennials are to blame for the demise of marriage, doorbells, napkins and even breakfast cereal. But what’s really going on?

“The real issue is not that Millennials are killing industries or businesses, but that businesses aren’t adapting,” explains Jason Dorsey, President and Co-Founder of the Center for Generational Kinetics.

3 Industries that Need to Adapt to Millennials

Here are three industries likely to feel the Millennial disruption this upcoming year:


Despite the fact that some chain restaurants are struggling to keep up with change, it that doesn’t mean the industry is dying.

“The rate of change has been accelerated by mobile technology and the size of the generation,” says Dorsey. “Many of these legacy industries have hid behind Baby Boomers, and they can’t hide anymore.”

Dorsey predicts an uptick in “groceraunts,” grocery stores that offer healthy prepared or easy-to-prepare meals that people consume at home. We can also expect to witness the rise of the “ghost restaurant”, a delivery-only restaurant that essentially doesn’t exist beyond its online presence.

“It’s delivery only, through a mobile app,” Dorsey explains, “with three to five restaurant concepts sharing one commercial kitchen.”

Luxury Goods

While it’s true Millennials are not buying items like diamond rings and expensive cars, it doesn’t mean they aren’t spending.

In fact, CGK found that Millennials broke their spending record last year, opting mostly for short-term indulgent experiences like weekend trips, spa days, and wine tours. However, more are opting to rent luxury goods, such as cars and designer clothes, but only when necessary.

Gyms and fitness centers

“Millennials are going to kill the traditional gym, no doubt about it,” Dorsey says, but at the same time, fitness and wellness are more important than ever.

Instead of free weights and circuit training, he says, the future is in specialized fitness classes. For traditional gyms to stay relevant, they’ll need to adjust offerings to include classes, community-centered facilities, and convenience services like babysitting and juice bars.

Check out what Denise Villa, the Center’s CEO, shared with Health Club Management about the changing needs of the younger generations when it comes to fitness!

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