MIAMI — Companies, including news organizations, have to embrace technology-driven disruption and new business models to draw Millennials as both customers and employees.

Led by Burson Marsteller CEO Don Baer, the session was underpinned by findings from the Telefonica Global Millennial Survey that indicate Millennials are concerned about the economy, have a bent towards entrepreneurship and worry technology’s benefits aren’t being shared across populations.

Yet, stubborn gender gaps persist even among the 18 to 30 year-olds surveyed. Eighty-percent of men consider themselves cutting edge on technology, compared with 69% of women. Globally, men were also more likely to say technology is important not only for shaping their lives but also as a route to professional success.

“Women graduate at higher levels, they make better grades but they don’t have as much advancement as men across all industries,” said Fernando Rodriguez, VP of programming at Fusion. Building women’s confidence around tech, increasing exposure to STEM sectors at a younger age and fostering a work culture that more’s accommodating to women were offered as ways forward.

When it comes to media consumption, digital trumps traditional formats with Millennials largely going online for news -- including  breaking stories --  and entertainment. Other panelists included Richard Poston, director of corporate affairs at Telefonica, Daniel Lafuente, co-founder of The Lab, and Silvina Moschini, founder Intuic.

Poston noted, understanding the next generation is crucial not only for recruitment but to ensure telecom services are keeping pace with change. 

When it comes to content creation, brands should think about shareability -- and what content would convey to a reader’s larger network. Breaking news, as well, should include curated information from the social channels.

“The language of the future is digital literacy,” Lafuente noted. 

Sixty-eight percent of Millennials believe entrepreneurship is available to them. Lafuente said Millennials also feel that traditional business models are outdated, so “they’re trying to change entire industries.”