David Thurston Discusses Millennial's In the Work Place

I’ve recently been engaged in a lot of conversations with industry leaders (product manufacturers, product distributors, beauty media, salon owners, and stylists) and it’s crazy how much I hear the buzzword “Millennial’s” lately, which is a name given to the generation of people who are currently in their twenties.

When I hear the word, it’s usually in the context of someone pointing the finger of blame at them for being the reason the industry is changing, supposedly for the worse.

Typically when I hear the word used, it’s used in a derogatory way, often in the context of labeling members of that generation as being un-coachable, too independent, lazy, not respectful of authority, and believing they should have success before they’ve earned it.


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My generation has been labeled “Generation X”, and when I was in my twenties, I seem to remember my generation being accused of having the exact same characteristics and being blamed for changing things, always from something good to something bad.

Just as I did then, I still cringe when someone places an entire generation of people into one bucket, because when I was in my twenties, I remember some of my peers were lazy and some were ambitious.

I’m friends and colleagues with many stylists in there twenties, and I don’t think their so-called characteristics are to blame for the change in the industry.

I believe technology is to “blame” for the change. As I’ve written before, stylists can now book their own appointments, market themselves, run credit cards, educate, inspire, and set trends on their own… all from their own phones… and that’s what’s changed the beauty industry.

It's not an old vs young thing, because the truth is that all generations can and do take advantage of these new technologies. It's that those that blame the millennial generation for the change are simply those who have not adapted to the new technology and/or have not made the effort to connect with the younger generation.

- David at Butterfly Loft

About: David Thurston is the founder of Butterfly Loft salon and Ubungalows Luxury Salon Suites, that combined make up a 10,000 square foot salon and spa located in Los Angeles, California.  He is also the founder of Butterfly Circus, a touring education team made up of some of the most recognizable stylists in the world, who collaborate to put on large hair shows.  David is also the co-founder of Butterfly Loft Academy, a hands-on education company that teaches the latest Balayage, color melt, and vivid/pastel coloring techniques. Follow Butterfly Loft on Instagram.