05/21/2014 02:27 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

The Graduation Gift You Can't Afford to Miss

Graduation season is upon us and a new class of young men and women are moving on to the next stage of their life, whether it be to college or a new career. There's no secret that this new class of millennials have some tough road blocks ahead of them. Education and career experts have been discussing the career challenges of millennials for the past seven years. If you are still looking for the perfect graduation gift, consider this book: What Next? The Millennial's Guide To Surviving and Thriving in the Real World. This book is filled with every tactic I've personally used and implemented from the ages 15-27, which has allowed me to thrive both as an employee and entrepreneur despite a down economy. I've built successful businesses and I've climb the ranks in Corporate America working for some of the biggest businesses in their industries both as a Sr. Marketing Manager and a Business Consultant. I want to help your son, daughter, niece, nephew or that special loved one in your life achieve success as well, which is why I wrote this book. What Next has been endorsed by top industry influencers, including Barbara Corcoran of ABC's Shark Tank, and has received rave reviews from professors of Northwestern University and the Wharton School of Business.

Why Does This Book Matter?

The world we live in today has dramatically changed and the path the next generation has been led down no longer works. If you're not desperately afraid for the outcome of the millennial in your life then you need to listen up. Allow me to present three bone-chilling realities about the world we live in today that will affect your loved one's ability to survive and thrive in the real world. It's time to release the veil of deceit and get real. In my book I discuss the following topics at great length. Here's a preview:

The Prosperity Paradox:

Prosperity will be the biggest problem the millennial generation faces. Despite being the most educated generation in history, they will struggle to figure out how to provide a comfortable living that also affords them the opportunity to travel, save money, buy a home and plan for retirement. It will be an uphill battle as they deal with stagnant wages, increased inflation and an ever-increasing demand on higher work productivity.


Data source: Bureau of Labor and Statistics
Image source: Priceless Media Group

Are you familiar with this graph? This graph illustrates that from 1972 and onwards, the average compensation for Americans has flat-lined, yet productivity has skyrocketed. To make matters worse, inflation has also gone through the roof, so we are not only being paid the same wages year over year, but our dollar also buys less. It is extremely important for millennials to understand this so that they can begin making better financial decisions. If you look at the previous three generations a horrifying trend appears. The Silent Generation were able to support their families and live the American Dream on one man's income. The Baby Boomers required supplemental income from the woman in the household in addition to the full-time income of the man, and Generation X required two full-time incomes to raise a family. So what will the trend be for millennials? Four incomes. Two full-time salaries from both partners and two supplemental incomes from part-time jobs or side businesses. This is the world we live in today and it's only going to get worse.

Education Extension:

When teens and young adults graduate from high school or college there's a misguided belief that education ends. They think that their days of learning are over. This couldn't be any further from the truth, especially in this day and age. In order for millennials to survive, thrive and hold onto to their jobs and receive advancements, they will have to continually increase and improve their skills. Employers already expect this, even though they won't tell you directly. I've worked for Fortune 100 businesses and every company I've worked for has expected that I know certain things that were not anywhere in my job description. I'm a marketer, but I've also been expected to intimately understand design, copywriting, coding, etc. Can you imagine what I would have done if I hadn't picked up these skills throughout the years? I would never last at a job more than one month before being fired.

Being Average No Longer Works:

This will be the theme for this generation. Competition in all sectors of life is at an all-time high. If you want something in life you have to be remarkable. There are far too many talented people waiting to take your spot and they will! The game has changed and unless you adapt you will be left behind. If you're a Gen Xer or a Baby Boomer you likely remember when the personal computer was released. Many people thought it was a fad, so they ignored it. Those were the same people who 10-20 years later hit a career ceiling. Don't let this happen to your beloved millennial. Make sure they are prepared to take on the world based on the world we live in today, and not the world you lived in 20 years ago.

I've just released a flurry of thought-provoking ideas that I hope you understand and take seriously. It's time to think different. Money, giftcards and gadgets can be great graduation gifts, but how about considering a gift that keeps on giving? Give your loved one the gift of chance, a chance to reach their potential and a chance to live The American Dream. Once they've got this book in their hands they can never say you didn't help prepare them for the real world, so do yourself, your loved one and society a favor and get this book and spread the word! An entire generation is counting on you.

Michael Price is an entrepreneur and author of What Next? The Millennial's Guide To Surviving and Thriving in the Real World. An advocate of ideas for radical change, he has received critical acclaim for his lessons in education, career, entrepreneurship, and personal finance.