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I was interviewed the other day by the National Association of Colleges and Employers; this group is heavily involved in supporting career opportunities for college graduates. The focus of the interview was on generational diferences, and what happens in the workforce in the future.

Read the PDF! “Don’t mess with my powder, dude.” Such was the rather flippant response by an engineering graduate to a job offer from a leading architectural/engineering company. The CEO of the organization was explaining this story to me while we discussed the global trends that I should address during my upcoming presentation to staff of the organization. “What’s with these kids?” he asked.

Certainly there has been a lot of focus on how different the Millennial generation when it comes to the future of careers; I’ve been speaking about this issue for more than 20 years!

The article is below…… but read my article, ‘Don’t Mess with my Powder, Dude” for more insight on the work/life thoughts of the next generation. 

Also have a look at this video from an education conference, in which I speak about how video is the knowledge ingestion tool for the next generation.


Technology the Catalyst for Generational Differences
Spotlight for Recruiting Professionals
January 11, 2017

When we talk about generational differences, we no longer can just identify differences between generations, but we can identify differences within generations as well, according to Jim Carroll.

Carroll, a futurist and trends expert, says technology is the catalyst for the rapidity with which generations now evolve.

“It’s not politics or sociology, because they don’t move fast enough,” Carroll says. “The speed with which technology has come into their lives has made the differences within Generation Z that are amplified when compared to the Millennials.”

For example, Carroll says that there are definitely differences between a 30-year-old Millennial and a 25-year-old Millennial.

“There was a lot of technology coming at them as they grew up, but it wasn’t a huge amount,” he says. “But if you take an 18-year-old and a 23-year-old today—both members of Generation Z—it’s almost like they grew up in entirely different periods of time because they would have been exposed to different sets of technology.”

This carries over into the workplace. Carroll says Generation Z shares common traits with Millennials.

“They have very short attention spans,” he says. “They need multiple different things to do. These are all traits that were common with Millennials, but they are much more pronounced with the generation entering the work force.”

He says that a realization many organizations have not come to grips with yet is that this is the video generation.

“These young employees consume video like it’s oxygen,” Carroll says. “When it comes to training or any type of education or professional development, the use of video is paramount. These employees have never known a world without YouTube, so if you’re doing anything to engage them, it has to be video based. They are not going to sit and read policy and procedure manuals. Nor are they going to spend their time dealing with complex reports.”

They also have little time for what they consider unnecessary or unwieldy tasks or formats.

“They don’t subscribe to the idea of performance reviews or long, laborious processes in stages to move up the ladder,” Carroll says. “They don’t have a lot of patience for complexity and rules and structure. They get frustrated with antiquated practices. It has been a command and control workplace. Instead, they want to get in and get their work done without a lot of talking about it.”

Carroll explains that, with members of Generation Z, organizations also have a powerful source of collaborative powers that they need to harness.

“By growing up with mobile devices and social networks, the skills they bring into the workplace for collaborative capabilities is profound compared to what we saw with Millennials just 10 years prior,” he says. “Employers have to support that and take advantage of these collaborative capabilities.”

While technology allows employees of all generations to work remotely, Carroll believes Generation Z still will value connecting in person.

“The common prediction is that the new generation of employees is going to unplug, work remotely, and not congregate in offices,” Carroll notes. “I might be proven dead wrong on this, but I think that’s going to flip around so we’ll see a trend back to the workplace and increased human interaction.

“The employees entering the work force have untapped tools and skills for the workplace. We have to give them more credit than we do. They have surprised us in the past and I’m certain that they will continue to surprise us in the future.”

Lots of news going on around the world with government, scandals, ethics, and this and that.

Sometimes it strikes close to those you know. It’s staggering to watch the media storm that is today’s news as it unfolds in real time.

So let me tell you a story that involves my good friend, Pamela Wallin.

Twenty years ago, I caught the edge of the Internet explosion, and wrote a few books (actually, about 30) that made their way to the #1 bestseller list in my home country, Canada. Before I knew it, I was in the whirlwind that was media at the time : TV, newspaper, radio interviews, book tours. It’s a time I would much sooner forget. It was pretty bizarre. I don’t do much anymore, since much of it just seemed to be so shallow. (If you look hard enough, you can find a lot of it, such as the time Peter Mansbridge interviewed me in January 2000 for an hour about the future of the Internet — it’s in the CBC archives.)

Along the way, I was interviewed many times by someone who always struck me as someone who was just plain nice. Class. Sincere. Honestly interested in the topic at hand. A real journalist. Someone who didn’t just read the show notes and make shit up. Someone who really got into the story.

That person was Pamela Wallin.

I think I was on her Pamela Wallin Live show at least 5 times during the era. We covered fascinating topics; the politics of the Internet. The emergence of Mp3 technology and the impact on the music industry. The future of government in an era of global communication. How the world might change when everyone was connected. I have a lot of the show at home on a computer somewhere, and should digitize them one day and put them up. Most of what we spoke about came true. The Arab spring. The surveillance society. The upheaval and change in the global entertainment industry.

Here’s the thing. Somewhere during this time, I realized that Pamela didn’t know that she hadn’t registered the Canadian version of her domain name. She had owned, but no one thought to tell her that she should own the Canadian version,

So I told her I would register it on her behalf. I would take care of it. Make sure that no one used it for a nefarious, slanderous intent. Friends do that type of thing.

And so for about 10 years, each year, my wife and I would pay the bill to renew the domain name, and send her and her office an email. We all lived well in the knowledge that her good name was protected.

Eventually, we transferred all the details of ownership of her domain over to her office. I was always happy I did this. (And I did it for a few other high profile people too. Friends do this…)

Today, my friend Pamela Wallin is under attack. It seems to be a very complicated affair. But I’m with Pamela on this.

When you live a life in the public spotlight, you live a complicated life. I sent her an email the other day and said “there will be better days.”

I’m pretty happy I guarded the Canadian version of her domain name for a decade or more. And I would imagine that there are a lot more of her friends out there who have done things through the years to help her manage a complicated life. With no nefarious intent. With no dastardly scandalous thoughts in mind.

Simply because friends look out for other friends.

So I’m with Pamela on this, and I think all the other folks who know her for who she is should also stand up and say so.

I was the keynote speaker for the 14th Annual KIRA Technology Innovation Awards Show in New Brunswick, Canada last week.

I think it went well, based on this article.

KIRA – Looking to the future
By Colin McPhail
The Daily Gleaner, Fredericton & Region, Friday, May 4, 2012

The spotlight was on Jim Carroll as he aggressively paced the stage at the Fredericton Convention Centre, gesturing emphatically while citing statistics and quotes in a dazzling manner. The renowned futurist, however, spun the metaphorical spotlight on the audience.

“You need to think bigger,” he said.

There was no rest for the weary in a night that celebrated innovators from New Brunswick’s information technology sector. The best minds in the industry were challenged to continue to build on their success in a world where the rapid pace of change can’t be overstated. There’s no stopping or you’ll be left behind.

Carroll spoke to a crowd of more than 300 Thursday night during a keynote address at the 14th annual KIRA awards. He offered three simple words to help demonstrate the current climate of innovation: speed, scope, opportunity.

Waiting for the right time to move forward could be fatal, he said, adding the market demands creativity at a level never seen before.

“The future belongs to those who are fast,” Carroll said.

“The time to be focused on innovation is right now.”

Emphasizing the need for speed, Carroll said that 60 per cent of Apple’s revenue comes from products that weren’t in production four years ago. Half of what is taught in the first year of any science degree will be obsolete when the student graduates, while 65 per cent of young children will grow up and get jobs that don’t exist today. The list goes on, and IT is at the forefront.

“Silicon Valley controls the speed of innovation,” he said.

“The speed in which this is evolving is staggering.”

Seemingly timeless industries are already being revolutionized, he said, and the pace in which it occurs will only increase.

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