Often Gen Xers, Baby Boomers and Builders bemoan Gen Y.
"They want everything now", "They are selfish", "They don't understand loyalty", "It's all them!" are statements I regularly hear.
But Gen Y are as selfless, community focused and loyal as any other generation.
I have proof.
Some of the work I do with developing leaders has me working with students in various leadership programs for universities based in Melbourne, Australia. One such program, the PAL Program for the Faculty of Business and Economics at Monash University has students experiencing a range of developmental programs over a three year period. In their final year of the program the students create community based projects.
Each project must fulfil at least one of the following principles:
- Enhance the students to student experience
- Enhance the student to faculty experience
- Enhance the Faculty/University to community experience
A significant purpose of the program is to enhance the employability of the students by providing them with real opportunities to do real work. Universities recognise the importance of creating well rounded students who understand theory and are also able to put theory into practice. Over many years of facilitating these programs I can say that they do enhance the employability of the students. The lessons that arise from working with other talented people, within tight timeframes and limited resources (often there is no money available for the projects - the students have to generate the income they require for the projects to be funded - which create a wonderful 'mind-shift regarding money that is invaluable) are practical, real and powerful for the students.
After each day of completing my work with these students I always walk away with high energy levels and heightened sense of positivity regarding our future. These students do care about more than themselves, they are selfless and willing to give of their precious time for a higher purpose and most importantly they do make a positive difference. Our future really is in good hands.
I look forward to sharing their successes later this year.