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In Defense of Gen Y Workers

Dec - 5 - 2007
Nicole C. Engard

Found via Stephen’s Lighthouse:

I grew up turning in my homework assignments online and using online chat rooms as study groups with fellow classmates. And it worked for me. It worked real well. I love the Internet, online communication and Facebook because these technologies allow me to do what I do best: multitask. Since I've been trained by and with these new technologies, I am"”face it"”better suited for the new work environment than you old folk. Even you old folk are beginning to realize that collaboration is a better way to leverage information to produce services, products, whatever. But while you think of collaboration theoretically, I live it and breathe it. And, unlike you, change doesn't bother me. I love it.

This quote is from an article in CIO entitled In Defense of Gen Y Workers by Jarina D'Auria CIO Magazine's 21 year old Editorial Assistant.

The first commenter seems offended by Jarina’s tone throughout the article – but it made me laugh and Stephen who I think will admit is one of the “old folk” that Jarina mentions loved it too! The fact is that while Jarina’s generalizations about “old folk” are a form of turn-around. We’re constantly hearing that Gen Yers are spoiled, lazy, etc etc etc. And maybe that’s true of some just like maybe some of the “old folk” can’t use computers – but I’ve seen plenty of Boomers in the library world making amazing strides at innovation and learning technologies that I’ve never even heard of!

So – if you’re going to read Jarina’s article – don’t take offense – instead listen to what she’s saying about herself and learn from it – and remember that not all Gen Yers are the same – just as not all Boomers are the same.

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11 Responses so far.

  1. Tripp says:

    Ah…This is cool stuff. But as a member of Gen X, I can’t help but wonder where we are going to fit in this. A bridge? Ignored? Perhaps. Not trying to pick nits here, but this stuff totally fascinates me.

    Thanks for posting this.

  2. Nicole says:

    Why can’t we use the skills/traits we all have together? That’s what we’re doing now? Businesses aren’t usually running with an entire staff from one generation – they have people of all ages – so use the skills each generation brings and you have a pretty darn powerful team :)

  3. Tripp says:

    Ah…This is cool stuff. But as a member of Gen X, I can’t help but wonder where we are going to fit in this. A bridge? Ignored? Perhaps. Not trying to pick nits here, but this stuff totally fascinates me.

    Thanks for posting this.

  4. Nicole says:

    Why can’t we use the skills/traits we all have together? That’s what we’re doing now? Businesses aren’t usually running with an entire staff from one generation – they have people of all ages – so use the skills each generation brings and you have a pretty darn powerful team :)

  5. [...] always thought that being able to do multple things at once lead to more productivity – but after I posted the link to Jarina’s article, I got some links sent to me about how multi-tasking actually [...]

  6. Simon says:

    Thought it was terrible, myself. Most people get over the idea that they know everything, and that their parents are, y’know, so square and embarrassing and stupid, by the time they’re out of their teens.

    On Nicole’s comment that “We’re constantly hearing that Gen Yers are spoiled, lazy, etc etc etc.”. I’d disagree – all I seem to hear is how great and wonderful the Gen Yers are. I thought spoiled and lazy was the stereotype of my generation (something Jarina alludes to).

    More pertinently, Jarina’s mistaken her ability to use a particular set of technologies with tech literacy. Yes, she can use a computer better than most people my age can. Just like we could use VCRs better than our parents could. Just like my grandparents could probably drive better than their parents could. And just like the next generation will understand the next set of tools much better than Jarina (or you or I) will.

  7. Simon says:

    Thought it was terrible, myself. Most people get over the idea that they know everything, and that their parents are, y’know, so square and embarrassing and stupid, by the time they’re out of their teens.

    On Nicole’s comment that “We’re constantly hearing that Gen Yers are spoiled, lazy, etc etc etc.”. I’d disagree – all I seem to hear is how great and wonderful the Gen Yers are. I thought spoiled and lazy was the stereotype of my generation (something Jarina alludes to).

    More pertinently, Jarina’s mistaken her ability to use a particular set of technologies with tech literacy. Yes, she can use a computer better than most people my age can. Just like we could use VCRs better than our parents could. Just like my grandparents could probably drive better than their parents could. And just like the next generation will understand the next set of tools much better than Jarina (or you or I) will.

  8. Nicole says:

    Maybe I read the article with a sense of irony and humor – I didn’t take it seriously – and not knowing Jarina I don’t know if she was 100% serious – but it seems like people either find what she wrote worth reading or not – it’s fun to find articles like that that generate conversations ;)

  9. Nicole says:

    Maybe I read the article with a sense of irony and humor – I didn’t take it seriously – and not knowing Jarina I don’t know if she was 100% serious – but it seems like people either find what she wrote worth reading or not – it’s fun to find articles like that that generate conversations ;)

  10. Simon says:

    Yeah, I can see how it would appear differently if you took it that way, and I do see how you could have taken it that way, although I didn’t.

    And double yeah, conversation good (grumpy blog comments, not so much ;)).

  11. Simon says:

    Yeah, I can see how it would appear differently if you took it that way, and I do see how you could have taken it that way, although I didn’t.

    And double yeah, conversation good (grumpy blog comments, not so much ;)).


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