April 26, 2018

Are You Underutilizing Younger Employees?

Great post on Harvard Business Review by Bronwyn Fryer.  Why do we so often dismiss or underutilize our younger employees?   Is it because we think we know it all, or do we think these young men and women are our kids, so of course, they can’t possibly bring value to the table?

Over the past two years, I have learned more by spending time with hundreds of Gen Ys than I have learned in a long time.  These young men and women are bright, tech savvy, worldly, civic minded and quite resourceful.  They have hutzpah!  Before you decide to dismiss a twenty-something point of view or their talent, think twice.  Get to know them, and you may just find that you will learn something quite valuable…that age means nothing when it comes to wisdom..

Y Talk Interview with Menachem Wecker

I had the honor of interviewing Menahcem Wecker last night. Menachem is the Assistant Director of Public Affairs for Publications and Media of International Affairs, The George Washington University. Listen in to this discussion on the topic of the convergence of religion and art. So fascinating! To learn more about Menachem and his work, visit his blog: http://iconia.canonist.com/.

100 Young Americans

If you want to be inspired by 100 Generation Y leaders, check out 100 Young Americans by Michael Franzini.  It is a beautiful book which represents the diversity in our teenage population America.  The website offers videos and images and the book is available through Amazon.com.

Millennial Leaders .

Millennial Leaders Review on Pop Syndicate

Read the latest review on Millennial Leaders on Pop Syndicate by reviewer Angela Wilson.  Thank-you Angela for taking the time to read and review the book..

Penelope Trunk on Getting Back on Track

I will be the first to admit that I am somewhat of a book junkie…I read every day, and I am totally in love with the one-click settings at Amazon.  I feel such a sense of accoplishment when I click on 2-Day One Click–FREE.  I then get even more of a thrill when the UPS man delivers the book to my front door (and my dogs Max and Rosie love it too…gives them something to do as they try to eat him up).

But…the reality is that most of the books on my bookshelf are  *&^).   I flip through them, and I feel like I’ve read them all before. 

But last summer, I found a book that I will go to my grave with:  Brazen Careerist by Penelope Trunk.  The book came into my life, and I don’t think I’ve been the same since.  Hmmm…maybe I know it’s because I no longer have to try to give my kids career advice (try is the operative word here, because I am the worst on career advice, and I certainly don’t try to give career advice to age 20-somethings or even 30-somethings).

It dawned on me in the middle of reading this book (fabulous!  fun to read!  smart!) that I now had someone who was practical, wise and down to earth (and young) who was providing daily advice to young careerists and could help my kids (who stay in their heads a LOT) with making decisions about their careers.   Ann is a sophomore at Duke U. Katie is at Wofford College and Jack will be attending the University of North Carolina this fall (but he is already saying he is majoring in golf and girls, so I don’t know how much Jack will be into the whole career advice thing, but he may surprise me).  They don’t know Penelope (and I don’t really know her…I interviewed her one day, and we have exchanged e-mails), but Ann and Katie are now reading her blog regularly (and of course you all know that I read it too), and we are discussing what she has to say (and we all agree that  her ideas about career, biz and life are spot on…Ann and Katie are both very practical, hard working and down to earth, so her views line up with my daughters’ perspectives).   And, as we all know, Gen Y does not listen to Baby Boomers, especially when they are their parents.

Penelope and a group of young professionals opened the BrazenCareerist.com site last week, and Penelope blogged today about how she got back on track after a few days away from her blog.   I forwarded this post on to Ann and Katie this afternoon…just in case they missed it. 

Now, becaus of the BrazenCareerist site,  my daughters (and my network, because I have told everyone about it) have been introduced to a host of young career/biz advisors…such great stuff.  And, as someone who is committed to making sure that young emerging leaders have access to the most current information possible, I want to thank Penelope for taking the week off to get this site up and running.  It’s really great stuff and is already having a positive impact on the young careerists in my life..

At Work Size Does Matter by Jaclyn Schiff

Jaclyn Schiff (One of the contibutors to Employee Evolution) has opened The Schiff Report.  She has an interesting post today about an employee’s first career steps and the potential benefits of going small vs. large:

“My hunch is that during the first few years of your career, smaller companies could allow you to be a lot more hands-on from the start … On the other hand, the opportunities at a large company can really enhance your professional development, even if your job responsibilities initially do not.”

I see both sides of this perspective, and have lived both.   I started out at age 22 working for a large healthcare corporation and realized 18 months into my career that I was not happy in the least (I was just not cut out for a career in health care…I just don’t think it suited my personality).  But… I would have never known that had I not put myself into that environment for 18 months.    I struck out on my own at age 23, formed a consulting company, and I have not returned to the corporate world since.   Now, sitting here, 25 years later, when I do have to submit a resume for a consulting gig, my potential clients only want to know about what I have achieved in the last five years.   The corporate job from 1982 never comes up.  It’s as if it never happened…but it did something amazing…it pointed me in the direction of my current career, which is truly a dream career for me.

If you are reading this blog and wondering what to do about your career, I encourage you to check out the young leaders we have spoken with over the last 18 months.   You can read about them here and here.  Many have worked for large companies, many are solo biz owners (or in partnerships) or have done both the big corporate approach and the small biz approach.  I am a firm believer in talking with at least 20 people to find out the benefits and the negatives of both and then choosing a career path that provides you the opportunity to grow and develop your talents (even the worst jobs and business failures teach us so much).  One of the benefits of working with a large company is not just getting connected to the strong brand but allowing some of your hidden talents to come to the surface (maybe you are a great writer or a great communicator, and these strengths come out in your first job).  With a large company, you also have the benefit of being able to build a strong network with super sharp people who can become a part of your support system down the road (I am still in touch with many of my colleagues from my first healthcare career).  Look at not only the company and the job but the secondary (often not so obvious) benefits.  And, as I have always said, sometimes we are asked to step into roles that may not be what we love doing but which help to build mental and emotional strength.  Every step we make leads to the next, leads to the next..

Brazen Careerist.com Opens

Penelope Trunk and a host of other young, sharp professionals have opened BrazenCareerist.com.  I perused the site this morning after a long biz trip, and it was great to read what so many young careerists are saying (not just about career but about life, Generation Y and the future). 

You can check out the list of bloggers here.  I see a few familiar faces… Ben Casnocha, who is featured in the Millennial Leaders book.  and Jaclyn Schiff of EmployeeEvolution.com.  Great job folks and great stuff!  This looks like it is jam-packed with ideas and wonderful advice for everyone.  But…if you are a Gen Y, please check this site out.  You are going to land on a gold mine of fresh perspectives and ideas for both career and life..

Millennial Leaders Mentioned in Employee Evolution

Jaclyn Schiff is a journalist based in Washington, D.C. She is a full-time writer for a Web site that focuses on global health issues. She has published articles (often about issues of interest to Gen. Y) in a variety of print and online publications.  She recently mentioned our work in her Employee Evolution News.

Millennial Leaders.