In the past I have pondered the phenomena of entitlement associated with Gen Y and Millenials. Well, hold the phone...I think the past 10 months has given all of us - Gen X'ers and Y'ers and beyond - a little dose of reality. 2009, so far, has shown us economic turmoil that most of us have never experienced in our lifetimes - and hopefully never will again. Collapse of the housing market, unemployment rates through the roof, banking crisis, bankruptcies, layoffs...you name it. It all equals one thing. Complete craptasticness.
If there's anything good to come out of this (you know me, always make lemonade but keep it a little tart,) it's that the younger generations in the workforce see that life is not easy - not everything is a given and it's not guaranteed - but more importantly it's very telling for a company's DNA.
To a lot of people, turning the mirror on ourselves is a really shocking and scary premise. To me, it's inspiring. It shows me what people are truly made of. How will they react when the chips are down? It's easy to be rah-rah-sis-koom-ba when the going is easy, but what will your people do when all hell breaks loose? Will they band together and weather the storm, or will they self-destruct into a finger pointing band of gypsies willing to not only throw their brethren under the bus, but back up a few times for good measure?
Take a look around. Who are you surrounded by?