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March 09, 2010

Idealawg: Can anyone fix Gen Y's quick-fix chip?


Lest we begin to hear the awful roars of manager-wielded chainsaws in the white collar workplace. Seriously, for a sober moment, like about five minutes, let's resist the burning urge to vent about the time, money and resources spent recruiting, training and keeping smart young workers and students whose idea of excellence is showing up by 9:00 AM and breathing on their own for eight hours.

First, know that it's everyone's--or no one's--fault. But it's still a mind-numbing problem, i.e., employees who can't work, and don't even know it. Many employers in the West never expected this to happen--any more than they believed they would be abducted one evening by the Crop Circle People and taken to the planet Zangor.

Second, and seriously, this time, take a look at Stephanie West Allen's post at her Idealawg entitled. "Are Gen Y kids harder to teach? Are Gen Y employees harder to manage?". She highlights one part of the puzzle being discussed by John Dunford, a prominent British educator, who has suggested that English children currently in secondary school are "harder to teach" because they are so oriented to the Internet and television that success in school "cannot come fast enough". In short, they require instant gratification.

Here are some excerpts from a speech Dunford made this past weekend that appeared in yesterday's Daily Mail (which Stephanie links to along with another article about Dunford):

Children are increasingly reluctant to put real effort into their studies because they expect success to be instant.

The attitude has apparently spread to A-level classes, where few teenagers read books other than those produced for the syllabus which tell them exactly what they need to know--and nothing more.

Research shows that young people spend an average of 1.7 hours per day online, 1.5 hours on games consoles and 2.7 hours watching TV, Dr Dunford added.

'They live in a celebrity-dominated society where success appears to come instantly and without any real effort,' he said. 'It is difficult for teachers to compete. Success in learning just doesn't come fast enough.'

Dr Dunford went on to call for reforms to exams to encourage youngsters to work independently.

'To engage the impatient young people of generation Y, something more is needed.

Posted by Holden Oliver (Kitzb├╝hel Desk) at March 9, 2010 11:59 PM


Thanks, Chris. Makes perfect sense.

To be completely honest, none of the bigger issues really interests anyone at this blog. Our interest in the overall subject is very very selfish. We are just tired of wasting our money.

Just like to see a few huntin' dogs.

Posted by: Dan Hull at March 9, 2010 11:12 AM

This is an age old complaint about children. "X" is ruining their lives, they can't learn anymore, etc. First it was tv, then video games, now the internet. Dr. Dunford names all three. The internet IS the problem but only because it allows all these parents and researchers to realize that everyone has children who would rather do other things than schoolwork. The bigger issue is all this time spent trying to come up with what the "problem" is and parents not just telling their kids they have do their homework or read a book.

Posted by: Christopher Sanders at March 9, 2010 10:30 AM

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