Twitter Made Corporate America a High School Popularity Contest
Corporate execs need to drop out.
According to a recent report by the New York Times, Millennial and Generation X supervisors and CEOs are living in fear of their Generation Z employees in boardrooms and break-rooms everywhere. The reason is simple: Their kingdom to avoid being called a _______ on Slack.
“The 37-Year-Olds Are Afraid of the 23-Year-Olds Who Work for Them,” the New York Times tells us: “Twenty-somethings rolling their eyes at the habits of their elders is a longstanding trend, but many employers said there’s a new boldness in the way Gen Z dictates taste.”
The Times is right about one thing: This is nothing new. Generational conflicts have been central to humanity since we started keeping records- and probably long before that.
You don’t get three-thousand year old edicts like “honor thy father and mother,” unless they are necessary. We don’t have child labor laws because we don’t need them.
Hewn cries of “Kids these days!” have been around as long as those same kids have been using insulting monikers to answer that charge. Yesterday’s “Relax Daddy-O!” was probably every bit as annoying as today’s “Ok; Boomer,” — or whatever kids these days are calling their elders now.
Teenagers and young adults in ancient agrarian societies probably called their hardworking farmer fathers “Dirtbags”. Teenagers in Ancient Rome probably told their paterfamilias frequently; “Relax, Sandals; I’ll be home by curfew.”
Name-calling is a psychological gambit; kids are the best at it because they get the most practice. By the time an 18-year old graduates from high school, they have spent the better part of 14 years taking and dishing out insults on a daily basis.
It’s not socially acceptable for an adult to call a co-worker with whom they are having a disagreement names while the rest of the meeting participants join in, snicker or look uncomfortable. That would be what adults call a “toxic work environment.”
As any hiring manager worth their credentials can tell you, employees don’t leave companies; they usually leave people. A boss, a bosses boss, a bullying co-worker; often when a disgruntled associate quits it is…