7: The Future of Work and Education - A Millennial Perspective
This episode is a little different. A joint experiment. A nebulous mission. In this inspiring international discussion, I was honored to be joined by two co-hosts: Dawna Jones of Vancouver and Gert Penne of Belgium. And three guests: Willow Bumby and Lindsey Henwood of Vancouver, and Josh Shaffer of Tampa. With 6+ participants, spanning 3+ countries, 3 continents, and 3 generations we explored not only the future of work, but also the future of education. Dawna Jones is the AUTHOR of DECISION-MAKING for DUMMIES. Her book appears on Steve Denning's (Forbes) list of 8 Noteworthy Books for 2014. Dawna is also the host of the “Evolutionary Provocateur” podcast. Gert Penne, an account executive in the tech industry, is a an Empathic Problem Solver, who takes a principle-centered approach to teaming across cultures, disciplines, and generations. At the end of a 2-continent, 3-country Skype call, Dawna, Gert, and I found ourselves talking about generational differences globally. With the goal to learn how the next generation sees the Future of Work, we decided to invite 3 Millennials to a follow-up call. This show is that call. Millennials fall just after the Gen-Xers. They were born between 1982 and 2004. We were fortunate to have 3 Millennials join us. Josh Shaffer is an early Millennial, and works for Accenture in Talent Acquisition in Tampa. Willow Bumby is an iOS Engineer, designer, and writer, as well as a teacher at Lighthouse Labs in Vancouver. Lindsay Henwood is a User Experience Design Instructor at Red Academy, a rapidly growing Tech School startup in Vancouver. Two other Millennials joined us virtually. Lauren Kirmil is a Marketing and Media Specialist and a former technical recruiter in the San Francisco Bay Area. During her extensive travels throughout Southeast Asia she worked as a freelance travel writer. Grace Liu is a former Outreach Support Officer at the British Consulate in Guangzhou, China. She recently received funding to start a venture in Shenzhen. With the assistance of her NYU professor she also plans to start an NGO incorporating ancient contemplative practices, including meditation. In this discussion we covered a wide range of topics. Distributed workforces and workplace flexibility and the big American offensive to change the workplace. Self-responsibility, self-awareness, self-perception. Cultural fit: the “techie” mold and the pressure to fit in. The dying days of the industrial model, the irrelevant university degree and the rise of bootcamp style education. The need to understand the next generation, and the companies which will die. The rise of the robots and the growing fear of job loss. Capitalism and its schizophrenic booms and busts: do we want an economy based on self-interest or creativity and collaboration? Tribalism and the need to belong: do we become global citizens or nationalists? Surviving the industrial model and designing the new workplace. The need to shift easily into different industries and the costly risk in over-specialization. The silliness of our current system and people's inability to work with power. And the power coming from the “Millennial values”.