Defining the Millennial Personality


We’ve identified 14 character traits that Millennials use to describe themselves. Through cluster analysis controlling for gender, these descriptions provide the basis for our YSegments, a proprietary segmentation of the Canadian Millennial market.

Using these character traits we formed six clusters that help to define the Canadian Millennial group.

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These go-getters want it all, they place a high priority on both having a family and a successful career. While achievers are outgoing, adventurous and willing to try new things they are not normally described as carefree. In fact, many would consider them a little up-tight. Achievers identify themselves as stylish, cultured and eco-conscious. They are likely to buy organic foods, go to the gym or a yoga class and would rather avoid technology when they can.

The achievers make up 17 percent of Canadian Millennials surveyed. This group is mostly female (89%) with fewer male Millennials (11%). Half of Achievers (51.5%) are currently enrolled in either University or College and have the highest percentage of Millennials currently enrolled in full time studies at university. 37.4% of Achievers plan to return to school for more education as soon as possible, notably few (only 5.8%) are sick of school.



While they may be shy, pacers know that people look to them for information. They grew up as important trendsetters in certain areas, like the technology industry, and they know this is their strength. Pacers prefer to congregate with people who have similar interests instead of following the flock to malls and parties. These self-professed “couch potatoes” may prefer to stay home but they are more likely to communicate with people from all over the world through social networks, online groups, and multiplayer videogames online.

Pacers make up only 16% of Millennials surveyed.This group is made up of 62% males and 38% females. Four in ten (41%) pacers have at least one parent that was born outside of Canada and for 32.7% of pacers both parents were born outside of Canada. 18.6% of Pacers are of East Asian or East Indian origin. Few pacers (24.2%) are interested in returning to school anytime soon. However 28.7% would consider returning after they gain some work experience.



Sparks are eco-conscious, creative and want to make a difference. They tend to be more shy than outgoing. They value having free time and like living in the city where they can be close to everything. Most Sparks are working part-time jobs just to get them by and aren’t driven by career success right now. Sparks would rather have a quiet night in than go out to a party.

Sparks make up 17% of Millennials surveyed. The sparks are made up of 64% female Millennials and 36% male Millennials. This group is made up predominantly of Millennials with European ancestry. Many (38.7%) sparks would be happy to return to school as soon as possible and 29.5% would like to return to school after they gain some work experience. With many sparks working only part time notably few sparks (3.7%) see the cost of education as a barrier to returning to school.




Stampeders are a unique male segment. They like to be in the centre of it all and tend to be outgoing, athletic, stylish, cultured and adventurous. They like to party, play videogames, watch sports and enjoy gambling. They are creative, eco-conscious and aware of new technology. . Right now they are focused on their career and don’t mind living at home until they can afford a place of their own. Stampeders are confident of themselves in most things and, for example, most believe that they would do better than average in a fistfight.

The Stampeders make up only 14 percent of Millennials surveyed. Among the 100% male group fully 18.2% of Stampeders are French Canadian. Around 3% of Stampeders have African ancestry and 1.5% said they have Arabic ancestry, more than any other group. 38.2% of stampeders would like to return to school for more education as soon as possible. Additionally, 33.1% feel that they would like to return to school after they gain work experience.




These footloose Millennials like to go out and have a good time. They are adventurous, outgoing and carefree. Driven by spontaneity they don’t usually make plans in advance. Whether they are in the gym or outdoors most footloose Millennials like to be active. Despite their wild ways, they hope to make a difference in the world someday.

Fireflies make up a large group of the Millennials surveyed (18%). This group is mainly female (84%) with fewer males (16%). One third of Fireflies have a university degree, and another third are currently enrolled with a university full time. Over half (54%) attended college and 9% currently are enrolled with a college. While this is not the most academic group 35.3% of footloose Millennials would like to return to school for more education as soon as possible, however , 21.2% do not think returning to school will make them better off.


Simple Lifers

Simple lifers have worked to get where they are. They are content working for a large company and hope to own a comfortable home in the suburbs someday. These Millennials like to wear nice but functional clothing and drive nice but functional cars. Most simple lifers do not consider themselves eco-conscious or creative and in their free time they prefer to kick back and watch a sports game.

Simple Lifers make up a large group of the Millennials surveyed (18%). This group is closest in representation from both males (52%) and females (48%). 20.7% of all Simple Lifers are French Canadian . Most Simple Lifers have either a university degree (46%) or attended college (46%). 36% are currently enrolled at university and 10% at college. Relatively few simple lifers would like to return to school for more education. They are more likely than any other group to be sick of school (12.4%) or think that more school will not improve their situation (23.2%).


The Canadian Millennials

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