All around the world there’s a new generation. The first to come of age in the digital age, and these kids are different. They turn on their computer.They’re in three windows, three magazines open, listening to mp3 files, texting, they’ve got a video game going, maybe they’re doing they’re homework, but the television is on in the background, it’s like Muzak.
They are a generation that wants freedom, freedom of choice. They’re a generation of innovators. They’re a generation that has very strong values. They’re a generation of collaborators, and they’re a generation that wants speed. They want things to happen fast, and this is not immediate gratification, as some people say, this is legitimate expectations that things should happen more quickly.
Redesign Work Around New Principles
Huge implications for our IT, and the way we design our companies. We need real-time innovative, collaborative responsive, customizable organizations where people have freedom.
When the Don Tapscott group surveyed young people around the world, they asked them, what are you doing when you’re online? Are you working, learning, collaborating, or entertaining yourself, and having fun?
And, everywhere they couldn’t answer the question. They said, yes, or I don’t know, they’re all the same, aren’t they? And, I think the kids have got it right and we need to redesign our work systems around those principles.
Re-Think Talent Management
As this net generation comes into the workforce,they’re causing us to rethink many aspects of talent management. Right now, we think we recruit, and train, and compensate, and retain, and supervise human capital. Well, for this generation, you don’t recruit them, you build relationships with them at an early age, and then, when it’s time to bring them into your company. It’s just a boundary decision.
Most companies today think that talent is inside of the boundaries. The expression our most precious asset goes out of the elevator every night, but now, because of the internet, the boundaries of corporations are becoming more porous, and talent can be outside. Companies can tap into vast pools of labor and capability that exists outside of their boundaries, and in doing so, they bring the uniquely qualified minds to bear on any challenge of innovation, or production, you name it.
You don’t train them because work and learning is the same thing. You don’t try, and retain them because they can move in and outside of your boundaries.
You don’t evaluate their performance annually, because they want-they want feedback every day. HR executives and all executives need to rethink many aspects and many fundamentals of management itself.
I think that education and training are going through a big change in our companies. First of all, To have someone lecturing you when there’s a right or wrong answer is a model that’s ineffective for a new generation that’s grown up learning through collaboration and through interaction, and that wants customized learning experiences. The second thing is if work, and learning are the same activity, why don’t we develop training strategies that seek to improve the learning component of work? At my company, our training strategy is three words, everybody must blog.
Embrace Networks for Innovation
Our companies need to be able to get beyond primitive technologies for collaboration like email, and embrace the new collaborative suites. These are industrial-strength social networks, that enable brain storming, the creation of teams, ideation, holding challenges or jams, wikis, blogging, micro-blogging, next-generation project management.
Engage Citizens in Co-creating Public Value
The Digital Revolution is transforming two big aspects of government. One is the business of government, or how governments operate, and the second is the nature of governance itself, democracy, and how we engage citizens.
This is the biggest change in the architecture of government since The Industrial Age began. The digital revolution is not just changing governments. It’s changing governance itself; Well now, we have an opportunity to engage citizens in co-creating government, and in doing so, public value,
We need to do this because there’s a new generation of young people who are disproportionately feeling the economic crisis around the world. If we don’t change our model, and reach out to young people, then there can be huge dislocation and disruption in society or worse.