I’m fascinated by the topic of workforce and leadership development, partly because I’m a parent and partly because I work with organizations grappling with generational issues.
I know all too well that everyone has an opinion on “today’s” generation and “tomorrow’s” generation and how these differences challenge organizations. But one topic that remains to be explored is workforce readiness.
The Conference Board recently released a report which argues: “High school and college graduates are showing deficiencies in both basic and applied skills, and a real lack of preparedness for today’s world of work.”Unemployment among teens and young adults has been at an unprecedented rate for several years. Even before the economy took a nosedive, employers preferred to hire senior citizens or immigrant workers over Generation Y.
So, would you hire your own kid?
Let’s be honest. Probably not.
The Conference Board report explains there are seven survival skills that our new graduates must have but are not getting in our current educational environment.
I’m going to take this a step further. I think parents are partially to blame. Not public or private education. Not government. We, the parents, made this mess.
Parenting has changed substantially in the past 20 years. I’m not proclaiming to be an exceptional parent by any means, but as a generational expert I have observed how the changes in parenting have created a generation that’s lacking critical skills.
Here are the seven skills new graduates lack and examples of where I believe parents are falling short:
I predict that in the coming years we’re going to see a growing demand for workforce development programs in the school system and leadership development programs in the workplace simply because the next generations aren’t equipped to meet the needs and expectations of the workplace.
As parents, be aware that we need to do a better job of preparing this generation for increased responsibility.
As employers and executives, be prepared to introduce programs that will help young adults obtain the skills they need to work for your company.
By 2015, Baby Boomers will cede the majority of the workforce to Generation Y.
Ready of not– here they come.
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