Lincoln Young Professionals Group
The Face of Lincoln’s Changing Workforce
The face of young American workers, their jobs and where they work is changing.
By 2018, employers will see any many as five generations working side by side. More than 60 million baby boomers will exit the workforce, and by 2025, only 40 million new workers will enter to replace them. Advancements in technology will help elevate some labor shortages but not in all sectors. Estimates suggest millennials could make up as much at 75 per cent of the U.S. workforce by 2025.
Young workers today are more likely to be underemployed, earning less, living at home with their parents, delaying marriage and dependent on technology. They are less likely to be affiliated with a political party or group.
Here is what we also know—today’s young workers are highly engaged with their work, and their jobs are more mobile than they’ve been for any previous generation. Good jobs can be as easy to locate as a good internet connection, whether you are you in Albion or Atlanta, McCook or Miami, Lincoln or London. As the mobility of jobs continues to increase, communities must ask how they can become more attractive to young workers. Community vibrancy is an ever-increasing factor in today’s job marketplace as workers can often choose from where they work instead of simply locating to where jobs are located.
The attraction, retention and development of young workers are vitally important for any community to remain relevant in the the 21st century’s rapidly changing economy. With this in mind, community leaders across the state have targeted this talent pool with attraction and retention efforts, which include actually asking young workers what the community can do to be a more attractive place to live and work.
This was precisely what the Lincoln Chamber of Commerce, in partnership local businesses and young leaders, had in mind 10 years ago when they founded Lincoln’s Young Professionals Group. Lincoln was uniquely positioned to take the lead, because of its early start, vision for Economic Development, and the strong college presence in the city. In just ten short years, Lincoln YPG has grown (according to site selectors) to be one of the 10 largest in the country. The largest in the state and has over 1,400 members. Their mission is to write the future of the city and create one strong collective voice for next generation leaders.
Lincoln’s Young Professionals manifesto states “We believe in empowering YP’s in Lincoln to make a city that’s both energetic and dynamic.” “We believe in making Lincoln an amazing place where there is ownership in the city’s future.”
The list of successes in just ten short years is impressive: members have founded companies, created new organizations, run campaigns for public office, held elected office, served on city boards, created a statewide network, supported and helped pass important policies, run for public office, created signature events for the city, placed 100 YP’s on local non-profit boards, educated hundreds of YP’s with professional development, and mentored hundreds of students in Lincoln and exposed them to careers in the city they help to grow. And they are just getting started!
Of note at the local level, the Lincoln YP group helped pass the vote for the Lincoln Haymarket Arena project and the Lincoln Entertainment district, LPS Bond Issue and currently have a YP member that is a sitting Senator in the Nebraska Legislature and Lincoln County Commissioners.
Companies can also sponsor the group and receive unlimited membership plus employee access to development events. The importance of Young Professionals for companies is critical. They can put the driving force of YP’s and their talent to work in so many ways. Internal YP groups can recruit talent, innovate from within, try new products and services on for size, mentor of new recruits, and did I mention lots of energy for the future? They bring a significant voice to leadership and show us ways to rethink and reshape the future.
The Lincoln Young Professionals Group works to attract a diverse membership. They produce monthly events designed to help YP’s develop a personal and professional network, expose them to philanthropic needs and opportunities in the community, directly affect issues in Lincoln, grow members personally and professionally, and most importantly have a sense of pride in helping to shape Lincoln’s future —all while having fun and making friends. They can also join project groups that plan and execute events. There’s greeters who spread the word at events; policy advisors who weigh in on the city’s big issues and the leadership council who take charge.
Some of YP’s celebrated events include:
- Sip+Socialize This highly attended networking event is held from 4:30-7 p.m. at various locations around Lincoln. A great opportunity to grab food and a drink and meet other Lincoln YP’s in a laid back casual atmosphere.
- Blend: Morning-minded members are invited to come enjoy the latest Lincoln happenings from 7:30-9 a.m. as Lincoln YPG presents different information, tours and sessions to keep its members in-the-know.
- Table for 10 Enjoy lunch with 10 other young professionals at various locations across Lincoln. Table of 10 lunches are held periodically throughout the year.
- My Story Hear from community leaders as they share their stories of how they made their mark and how others can do the same.
- First Look Get a sneak peek at the newest businesses, organizations and facilities before anyone else!
- Night Out Enjoy a night with other young professionals while exploring the latest happenings in the Lincoln.
- What’s Next This series highlights the next big community projects and proposals that could have a significant impact on the city.
- Level Up Professional development events focused on growing members as an individual both personally and professionally, while providing opportunities to build skill sets and advance to the next level.
Creating new energy for the city was most recently fueled by YP week. Lincoln Young Professionals co-founded a week of carefully curated events for YP’s by YP’s called YP Week. To learn more go to www.LincolnYPG/YP week.
Next is Partnering Statewide. Collaboration is the key to moving forward, and we hope you join us. Follow us on social media and find out more at www.lincolnypg.com or contact Kayla Meyer at kayla.meyer@LCOC.com or Jaime Henning at jaimehenning@LCOC.com.