One of my favorite movie scenes of all time is from Jerry Maguire. Rod Tidwell, Jerry’s client, is telling him about the Kwan. Basically it equates to everything. Rod says, “I want the Kwan.” And Jerry answers him with “I am out here for you. You don’t know what it’s like to be ME out here for YOU. It is an up-at-dawn, pride-swallowing siege that I will never fully tell you about, ok?” Jerry, you speak to me, man. This is my life – the life of an HR Director.
Employees want the Kwan, meaning they want everything. They want to be paid better, with excellent benefits (often times not even knowing what equates to excellent benefits, mind you,) free lunches, free beer, parties, flexibility, more paid time off, more accolades, clowns, ponies, more, more, more everything. This is the Kwan for an employee in advertising.
Then again, what’s wrong with wanting everything, right? Wanting it is one thing, however, expecting it is something else all together.
There is an ever increasing population of the workforce that, *ahem* shall remain nameless, is brought up with an inherent sense of entitlement. I wouldn’t call it being spoiled per say, but I would call it a misunderstanding that certain things are not inalienable rights given at birth.
Growing up, a term that I was ingrained with was “paying your dues.” This term is no longer apparently taught early on, however, with the Gen X’ers now taking the helm, it perhaps is being learned through experience. As amazing as it might be to them, some of the new comers to the force are actually seeing first hand that opportunities, reward and appreciation are earned, not handed out like lollipops from the bank teller.
People often ask me what it is that I do, and I tell them “It’s pretty simple really. I find people, I hire them, and then I keep them happy.” The first two – I’ve got down pat. The third, now that one is the up-at-dawn, pride swallowing siege that no one will fully know about. Except maybe my therapist.