NEW: Mr Banker

I though the the baby boomers ahead of me were pushy and self-absorbed. Then I started interviewing Gen-Ys.

Generation gap

I’ve always understood it was polite to be a little vague about awkward subjects such as age, and perhaps it is for that reason that I’ve never quite got the hang of where Generation X and Generation Y start and finish.

As best as I can tell, I am a member of Generation X, the demographic that has so patiently waited for the self-absorbed baby boomers to finally start to retire, only to find the precocious and self-absorbed Generation Y trying to elbow their way in instead of waiting their turn.

(It may be that I have this the wrong way around, but the principle remains the same… bear with me.)

Anyway, a recent involvement in the bank’s graduate recruitment program has exposed me to Gen Y by the bucketload, and clearly they have a very different perspective.

When I was seeking graduate employment, I prepared my application for graduate employment on a device known as a typewriter, was very grateful to even be considered for a job doing anything at all, and would have been surprised to learn that any of my interviewers actually had a first name.

Today’s graduate appears to operate to a far more ambitious and shorter timeframe. I suspect it is only a matter of time before I receive an “application” letter as follows:

“Dear Bank,
I have enclosed a copy of my academic transcript.
Please advise when I will be CEO.
Yours faithfully, etc.

PS: Surely the starting salary is more than that?”

Although on second thoughts the “letter” will probably be a text message, sent without the faintest skerrick of punctuation.

Just at the moment, most employers are grabbing whomever they can. However, things will change, as they always do, and I am convinced there will in fact be excellent career opportunities for those who prove capable of staying in a role for at least as long as it takes to understand what is required of them, treat those around them with common courtesy, and demonstrate some degree of respect for the experience of those with whom they work.

However, I’ll keep those views to myself. Bitter experience with my five children has taught me that providing advice to young people is as likely to be productive as training a dog to play canasta.


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