I know, I know, why keep beating up on these kids? Because it must be done and as much as I’d like to walk away, I”m pulled back constantly. Ok, first I should mention that part two of the article I first referred to has come out this week. What’s fun is this article shares some of these kids’ point of view. How precious.
“We can come off as flighty, but that’s really our quick attention span… We need to multitask to stay constantly engaged.”
Notice how she not only defends a negative behavior but then potentially blames the employer for it. Flighty due to a quick attention span. Alright, I can certainly see that. That’s a weak defense for being flighty since I consider a quick attention span as a negative behavior that could and must be corrected before I’d hire you, but then there’s “We need to multitask to stay constantly engaged”. For starters, we’re clearly using different definitions for “multitask”. When I use it, I’m talking about doing more than one thing at a time. Now that’s what they’d no doubt say as well but with my definition there’s something implied that I feel is missing in theirs, and that’s that each thing done is done well (and not done “good” you butchers of English). This actually is a major crux of the disconnect with these punks.
IT’S NOT JUST ABOUT DOING SOMETHING, IT’S ABOUT DOING IT WELL!
But aside from this disconnect, there’s the assignment of blame, the all to frequent treat one gets when dealing with Millennials, the aversion to accountability. Notice this girl says she NEEDS to stay constantly engaged, so she’s saying that it’s the employers’ fault that they’re flighty because they’re not being properly stimulated. Hey listen up cupcake, you know what’s stimulating and might keep you engaged? FUCKING DOING GOOD WORK! Backing up my claims is this comment, “Millennials are masters of ‘continuous partial attention’”. Yeah, no shit.
Now there were some great comments to my previous post on Millennials. The Sacred Slut provided a link to this report on self-esteem myths. I love this:
Individuals who have an unjustifiably high opinion of themselves can, in many cases, pose a far greater threat to those around them than people whose sense of self-worth is unusually low.
and am frightened by this:
Young people with very high self-esteem are more likely than others to hold racist attitudes, reject social pressures from adults and peers and engage in physically risky pursuits
Can anyone say “driving and text messaging”? As if it hasn’t been shown that most Americans are too stupid to talk and drive, these kids text message and drive. I see it, and I hardly go out. I can only imagine if I was driving to and from an office everyday. Of course the report mentions reckless driving and drunk driving, but text messaging is a biggie. Of course it’s a UK report and perhaps the Brits aren’t as stupid or bloated with self esteem as our Millennials. I just have to cite two more things from this report before moving on:
Widespread belief in ‘raising self-esteem’ as an all-purpose cure for social problems has created a huge market for self-help manuals and educational programmes that is threatening to become the psychotherapeutic equivalent of snake oil. In America, the State of California even went so far as to invest significant public funds in trying to raise the self-esteem of its citizens.”
“Perhaps we should be more willing to accept that very high self-esteem is as much a problem in need of treatment as exceptionally low self-esteem and be more open-minded about the benefits of moderation.”
Let me return again to the Millennial from the Dallas article:
“We’ve been conditioned not to fail, and it tends to happen infrequently. So when it does, we don’t always know how to deal with it the first time.”
I also said I’m pulled back constantly to this topic, and today I received an email linking me to Killian & Company Advertising, specifically a page of some of the best excerpts from some of the cover letters they get. Now by best I don’t mean best qualified, but rather best examples of idiocy. There are way too many choice clips there to pick just one to include here, but I would like to quote what the agency says at the end of the page:
True story – many college teachers have told us variations of this story: they red-pencil and downgrade students for glaring errors in grammar, usage, spelling. Students go to the Dean to complain. Dean reprimands the teacher for being hard on tuition-paying future donors. Teacher (not tenured) shuts up, fumes, then collects samples to send to us.
Eerily moments before receiving this email I wrote a response to Sacred Slut about how colleges and universities have played a part in this Millennial nonsense. Here’s what I wrote:
The competition of course has gotten steep to get admitted these days, and one of the things that’s become a way to stand out is being involved in a ridiculous amount of activities. What does this mean? Well it shouldn’t take much thought to realize that a kid involved in 10 activities can’t possibly be anywhere near as good at or knowledgeable of any one of them as say the kid who is involved in only one or two, yet who gets admitted? The jack of all trades kid. Once again, what’s esteemed is not ability or mastery but merely participation and time spent.
But there is that issue the Millennial mentioned, the inability to handle failure. She incorrectly stated that they’re “conditioned not to fail”. It’s more like padded and protected from any possibility of failing. The part about not being able to handle failure is correct. As seen in the ad agency’s comment, they overreact in school and instead of being reprimanded they’re coddled and as a result, the standards go down because teachers are either unwilling to deal with the tirade or will simply get thrown under the bus by their school heads. To this I bring you to another example, one you might have seen on Friendly Atheist, where he links to this post by an Assistant Professor of English bemoaning the headaches of how his students, when given an essay assignment on something like Romanticism, turn in christian testimonials. Now what troubles me the most is his reaction to it. I quite bluntly asked whether these punks get big red “F”s or not and his response was that instead he justifies their grade on things like their lack of quote evidence for their claims (in this case their christian testimonials). Why? Because to fail them for simply disregarding the assignment and turning in christian testimonials would no doubt cause a stink and instead, citing lack of evidence is considered “a little less touchy”. Fucking outrageous! The man admits:
I can’t help but roll my eyes when Blake and his visionary cosmology, or Wordsworth and his “semi-atheism,” or heaven forfend, the outspoken atheist Shelley, are revealed to be Christians along the line Joel Osteen and Jerry Falwell
but is going to instead focus on lack of quoted evidence? Fuck me! That shouldn’t be the meat of the argument but rather the support, the condiments if you will, for the real meat which is completely disregarding the assignment as well as clearly not grasping the content of the class.
So let’s sum up what we have here:
1. A generation incapable of claiming responsibility or accountability
2. A generation that has a quick attention span and lacks focus
3. A generation that feels doing several things badly simultaneously trumps doing any one thing well
4. Colleges are partly to blame for encouraging #3
5. A generation so molly coddled that they can’t face failure without a meltdown or tantrum
6. Schools flat out won’t or are reluctant to fail the kids in part because they don’t want to deal with the tantrums of the kids
7. #6 gets cranked up a notch when religion gets thrown into the mix, in which case the religious either get an all out pass or you have to jump through hoops to justify failing which in no way refers to their religion or else you’ll get an tantrum that overshadows #5