CNN recently published a fascinating video titled “Employers Say Grads Expect Coddling,” and although it was only a few minutes long, it encapsulated today’s entry-level experience well. CNN's Allan Chernoff spoke to PR power girl Alison Brod, who explained today’s grads are energetic, tech-savvy, and collaborative—traits that she said she prefers in her employees.
But issues arose when she explained the downfalls of today’s entry-level kids: we’re dependent on social media, have short attention spans, and need constant approval and encouragement.
I was watching the video during my lunch break, and, coincidentally, I was chatting with a coworker and tweeting at the same time. The video continued to explain how today’s grads feel a sense of entitlement and expect favored treatment. At the same time, we’re reluctant to read anything longer than 140 characters and prefer to be on Twitter, Linkedin, and Facebook, all at once.
But what resonated with me the most from CNN’s video was the fact my generation is dependent on positive feedback. Although some encouragement is needed in the workplace to get the best performance, this could prove to be one of the biggest downfalls of our generation.
As an entry-level worker, my experience had been filled with incredible personal development, and at the same time, a less-than-typical amount of feedback. I’ve learned I can't be dependent on compliments or kind words, and I have to be confident in my work. I didn’t have a mentor or anyone holding my hand in the process because, like most work places these days, people are busy.
If you haven’t already, watch the video, and allow yourself to reflect on your performance in the workplace. Still searching for your first big-kid job, or will you be in the near future? Take some notes and be conscious of bad habits. And who knows? You could be the one to break the stereotype.