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Zack Demopoulos, CSA

2019 CSA Conference

 

Zack Demopoulos, CSA

Home Care Provider/Podcaster
ComForCare Home Care
zack.demopoulos@gmail.com

 

 

The Millennial Caregiver

Of the 40 million family caregivers living in the U.S. today, 25% are millennials.  Millennial caregivers and their older cohorts share many of the same caregiving issues but there are distinct issues that require understanding and consideration when trying to connect, support and communicate with a millennial caregiver. For example, more millennials work and provide care than any other generation.  With so many hours in any given week dedicated to unpaid caregiving, a millennial caregiver is at a high risk of suffering undesirable consequences from their role.  Gaining a better understanding of how caregiving can impact one’s finances, health and emotional stability will significantly benefit a millennial caregiver.   

It will be prudent for anyone who seeks to support millennial caregivers to also understand these issues.   Whether it is using the right communication style, having a mobile friendly website, knowing what is a podcast, blogging, creating content, or taking part in digital caregiver support groups, for example, any approach that a millennial caregiver can identify with and stay engaged will better serve this fast growing and significant segment of the caregiver population.   

Many of the various aspects that impact a millennial caregiver along their caregiving journey will be discussed.  Issues that are real both in the millennials’ work place and their personal lives.  Research has shown that millennials are experiencing more of a negative impact in their workplace than their older cohorts.  Coupled with the fact that employers do not think of millennials as caregivers due to their age, millennial employee caregivers do not speak up about their caregiving woes because they do not think their peers can relate and they fear earning a stigma.  This increases their stress and drives isolation.  Add that to work day interruptions, absenteeism and lack of being fully present. Millennials have to struggle with the perception they are not willing to work which can impact their performance as well as their pay.  There are tools to assist a millennial employee at work in juggling the caregiver role.   

Many millennials are just getting started in their careers and do not make the money their older generations do.  Many also possess significant student loans that they struggle to pay back.  Research has shown caregivers bear a significant share of caregiving expenses, as much as 20% of what they earn.  With many millennials being single and part of smaller family units, much of the financial burden and stress can fall on them. Unfortunately without the proper long term care planning from the care recipient(s) or the caregiver, this burden can ruin a millennial caregiver. There are tools and methods to educate and support a millennial caregiver in this critical planning for themselves and for those for whom they are providing care.   

Resources like caregiver support groups are readily available but the millennial at times may look at the participants and feel they have nothing in common with them because they are much older.  There are approaches to help a millennial feel included and to help older caregivers open up and share with the younger generation.   

Research has also shown millennial caregivers prefer digital resources that they can tap into at their own time, during off hours, or when they are commuting or working from home.  There is a vast amount of caregiver resources out on the internet but one practically needs a map and a guide to get through them.  It can be overwhelming and time consuming.  There are approaches to help a millennial caregiver sort through this information such as creating relevant content, engaging and interacting web sites, easy search tools, and streamlined information.  

Learning Objectives

  • Gain a better understanding of what makes up a millennial caregiver
  • Discover tools and approaches in communicating, supporting, and working with millennial caregivers
  • Gain more confidence and subject matter expertise in the caregiving space by being able to diversify your approach in supporting caregivers regardless of whom they care for

About Zack

Zack Demopoulos, CSA

Home Care Provider, Certified Senior Advisor (CSA), Podcaster, Executive Coach, Human Capital Management, Diversity & Inclusion, Small Business Owner, Entrepreneur

Zack has over 31 years of diverse business experience coaching, leading, facilitating, and delivering results across various businesses, functions, global regions, and cultures. His expertise lies in all aspects of human capital management and service delivery; and his passion lies in helping people.

Zack started a ComForCare home care agency in 2009

that went from $0 to $2 Million in revenue within five years and continues to be in the top 15% among the U.S.’s 150 franchisees. He has hired over 500 caregivers and provided service and support to over 450 older adults and their families. As a Certified Senior Advisor, he actively advocates for seniors and promotes vital resources to families in the community on managing the issues of aging. He gives talks to “adult children” on how to prepare and care for a parent who desires to age in place safely and with dignity. In 2017 he launched the “Raising ‘Rents (as in paRents) podcast that inspires, educates and supports caregivers of aging adults (www.raisingrents.com). He has produced 27 episodes with over 7000 downloads. As a Board Member for the New Jersey Home Health Services and Staffing Association he took part in legislature advocacy and promoted ethical business practices in the senior industry testifying in 2013 in front of the Senate Health Committee (NJ) advocating for improving standards while not increasing a senior consumer’s cost for service.

Zack’s early career spanned many years in various leadership positions with Pfizer, the largest pharmaceutical company in the industry. As Vice President of Human Resources for multiple functions, he supported the CFO and Vice Chairman on a global scale in corporate and field organizations. As a Global Diversity and Inclusion Business Advisor, he led high impact and broad reaching initiatives in the U.S. for the top four levels of management leading over 30,000 sales representatives. He also implemented diversity programs in international markets including Latin America, Europe and Asia.

As a certified diversity consultant, Zack helped private and public sector organizations identify their gaps in leveraging diversity to achieve their business imperative while sustaining a competitive advantage. His clients have focused on many aspects of people processes, various disciplines of managing today’s workforce, and building an inclusive culture that values, attracts, develops and retains all types of talent.

Zack with his wife Phyllis of 31 years have three young adult children and reside in New Jersey for the past 19 years after living in different locations across the southeast U.S. He has been a long distance caregiver for both of his parents. He is fluent in Greek and is an active volunteer in his community. As an Eagle Scout, he has held leadership roles in the local Boy Scouts of America. He has been active as a youth advisor and athletic director for the Greek Orthodox Youth of America and enjoys multiple fund raising activities including Home for Habitat and Multiple Sclerosis. 

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