Monday, December 12, 2005

Generation Can-do!

As a member of Generation X, I am led to believe that I am part of a slacker generation, that mine is the first generation whose anomie will outsize our ambition, and who will be living off our parents' social security checks well into our 40's.

But Generation Y, we're told, is just the opposite: they are eager, teamwork-oriented, and they wanna get in on the action any way they can! They tossed off the slacker mentality like so many old 80's compilations, and from the first day they get to work they pretty much feel sure they'll be running the place soon. Energy! Can-do!

Today's New York Post even provides a guideline to managing these bundles of ambition as they come swarming into the office, and it shows perfectly just how different our Gen Y-ers are from us--their crotchedy, unfulfilled slacker older siblings:

Give your GenY-ers small tasks. Once they're done, they'll feel a sense of accomplishment--and that's when you give them something else to do.
Read: they have the mental acuity of a small toddler or chichuahua puppy. They're all enthusisam and no attention span--but work with them, they've never really read books, and why should they? They're creative, visual types.

Explain the dress code. If the company policy says 'casual,' be sure to be specific. 'casual' to you means no tie; to them it emans flip-flops and a mini-slirt.
Read: Don't constrain them. Understand that Uggs are dress-up boots, and the midriff is there to be exposed. Provide some suggested parameters, but above all nurture their expressiveness.

And whatever you do, don't let the more experienced, jaded employees mess with the Gen-Y can-do attitude!
Read: Don't let the rancorous Gen-X'ers who actually know how to do things, tell them how to do things. Cheeriness and bounce is more important in today's workplace than experience, so keep your 30-something grinches away from today's tender youth, because these little peon fuckwads are gonna be your boss one day so you wouldn't wanthem to ahve had any instructive experiences along the way.


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