Thursday, September 02, 2010

Talking About 20-Somethings

By now, everyone I know has read the New York Times Magazine article titled "What Is It About 20-Somethings". It's been debated, discussed, and reviewed in many places. But as a 20-something in the job force, I wanted to discuss it a bit here on the blog...because I feel that me and my fellow 20-somethings are getting a bad rap.

We're in the LeBron James-decision, 140-character-Twitter, look-at-me-on-YouTube generation. And yes, I know plenty of people fall into there--babies who were born with a trust fund and parents who can't say no turn into adults of my generation who have never really held a job before and don't know how to have someone else bossing them around. Some people I know thinks the world revolves around them and have facts to back that up: their parents tell them they're that important every day with their words, actions, and wallets.

But there are still plenty of people like me who was forced to get a job if we wanted money, who are trying to make something of ourselves, who may have had undergraduate saved for by family, but certainly chipped in and definitely paid their way through graduate school. We worked hard in school and work hard at work and we have ambition and goals. And while we may not know exactly what we want in our future professional and romantic lives (and some of those issues in our romantic lives have to do with our parents generation who made America the divorcing nation and made our generation question marriage from so many angles), I doubt any of our parents really did either--and we definitely see many of those who did want to have the flexibility they think we have.

It's also not our fault we were thrown into this economy during our first occupational experience. We didn't ask for a recession and nothing we did caused the decision. We didn't take out risky loans and we weren't old enough to make the decisions at the financial institutions that made them possible and then rolled them up into collateralized obligations. We want to succeed but we are getting killed in the job market by people who are much more experienced. That we lack that experience because of our age is certainly not our fault.

So while I know people in Human Resources are reading that New York Times Magazine article and wondering why they should hire a snot-nosed, good-for-nothing, 20-something-year-old, I want to point out that we all don't think our poop doesn't stink. Hey, some of us do, but most of us have great ideas and we have ambition and we want to go places. Some may think we're stuck in some phase called "emerging adulthood", but we'll be the best damn workers you can find.

1 comment:

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