Gen-Y wants everything yesterday, and I’m sure not getting it fuels this generation’s angst. There is something to be said for ‘patience’.
I have distinct memories of my childhood revolving around patience, or the lack of it. Cliches such as “Good things come to those who wait”, “Patience is a virtue” and stories of hares racing tortoises all stick out in my mind. This, I can only guess, is due to a trait of life long impatience that I have shown and that my family and friends have had to endure.
If it was not “Are we there yet?” on a car trip, it was just not a real family trip. But it is only now as I grow older and somewhat wiser (this is up for discussion) I realise that all these people around me were on to something.
The world as it is now, and particularly, with over-ambitious Gen-Y, we all want everything yesterday. How come I’m not running Telstra already? Or why am I not a multi-millionaire at 30? These are all questions I have deliberated over and I’m sure resemble questions a lot of Gen-Ys battle with daily. But the truth is patience is truly a virtue.
All successful people I have met have one amazing quality – the ability to be patient. They develop a plan of where they want to be, determine the strategy and then work hard towards achieving their goal using patience and timing. This is applicable to sports stars, business leaders and so on.
The other thing that I have tended to find is that patient people tend to genuinely be happier. They enjoy the moment and are not always wanting more. They can see their plans coming in to place and enjoy the ride along the way. Meanwhile, the impatient bunch are highly stressed, wondering why they don’t have something, and spend their time trying to fulfil a happiness that cannot be filled.
Success in the business environment, be it ownership or as an employee, is based on patience. Toss in hard work and some general intelligence and you have a recipe for fulfilment.
To me, this is what distinguishes the Gen-Y era from the generations before it – the lack of patience. Enjoy the ride Gen-Yers; life happens once and once only, so don’t be in a rush to death. Set daily achievable goals and by all means make them as hard to achieve as possible, but take the wins with the losses and don’t lose sight of the big picture.
On that note, as my train is still delayed, I will wait patiently and ponder why a hare decided to race a tortoise in the first place.
Michael Phillips is a 29-year old CPA managing a business full of Gen-Ys. He’s the Commercial Manager of Cremorne Group which wholesales and retail mens and womens apparel, including the Tommy Hilfiger, Blazer and Perri Cutten brands. He offers his experience as a pioneering Gen-Y managing Gen-Ys, covering issues such as how to recruit, retain and get the most out of Gen-Y – the notoriously difficult younger generation of employees aged 15 to 30.
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