Friday, July 6, 2007

Fridays @ Work: Get Smart

My generation is caught in the crux between Generation "i" and the boomers, and we experience this change in the workplace. We can no longer trust our positions, our stability, our health care. We actually feel a little entitled to the stability of Olde. Both of my parents are drawing on retirement funds, something unheard of these days. I'm not sure even the government offers these kinds of benefits any more.

The younger generation never played a cassette tape, or sent out 100s of resumes on cotton-laid paper. This group doesn't expect any stability at work. They are made of modeling clay-- so flexible.

What do we all do make this new age work? Well, its all about being a free agent. Even though I am affiliated with my workplace, I'm proud of our products, and I'm developing a relationship with the management-- I still think every day about how I can groom myself for the next gig Just In Case. Tom Peters has the right idea in The Brand You 50. Although the writing style is a little (okay, a lot) stilted and tries a little too hard to be hip, the message is clear: be excellent, because you're not going to be taken care of by the world or by any organization. Be amazing, to differentiate yourself from all the other worker bees.

It has taken me a long time to get to the point, and its just this: LEARN. Learn to blog. Learn to use Photoshop. Learn basic accounting. Learn basketweaving. Exercise those synapses. At least, that's the cheer of my internal cheerleader. Be great. Be indispensable. Be not afraid.

What should we be learning? Tell me the few essentials in your job that should be universal knowledge. You'll learn from the exercise.

1 comment:

FranIAm said...

What a brilliant post! From an olde one (49) and about to go out on her own after years under one corporate god... I couldn't have said it better. In fact, I probably couldn't have said it at all, but glad that you did!