Warning- this may be a rant post.
There is a term that discribes some of the people that I’m had the “pleasure” of coming in contact with recently; they are called the entitlement generation.
The definition of the entitlement generation is kids who’ve always been told they’re smart, and never pushed too hard. I see them everywhere.
I swear, I don’t sit down and try and think of things to rant about, but I keep seeing so many different things that catch my eye and, at times, makes my blood boil. Lets start with the sense of entitlement that some people have these days. The beautiful and humbling part of being part of the PF world is that I am surrounded by amazing, smart, and educated individuals who are happy to share their lessons/learnings with everyone else. Just as I write here in an attempt to leave a diary so do a lot of others. Sure, some of us try and live off our blogs, but for 99% of us, blogging is more of a hobby than a side hustle. That alone makes sure that we have a standard to upload. Our generation (Gen Y) seems to live in a cloud. We’ve lost touch with reality.
I am a newbie blogger, or whatever the term for someone younger than a newbie. I understand that, like in real life, you have to put the work, and gain experience before you make it big. The issue that I present to you today is with people who;
- Assume that 3 months of work automatically makes you qualified for roles that are 4 levels above them.
- Don’t understand or pay attention to their skill level
Lets start with the first issue.
These days I work as a consultant for a few different companies. Its primarily project management with a bit of business development thrown in. The PM role is finding me hiring for positions as the companies grow. I really enjoy that part. I get to meet new people and really learn what drives them. My MSc. is in Biology; a subject completely unrelated to the sector that I worked in for the last 10 years. It took a long time to figure out what my strengths were and a lot longer to hone those skills in a professional setting. I volunteered for a lot of projects that I had no business in, but slowly, and surely things started making sense. I sat on Boards, I fundraised for Organizations, I transfered and worked with HR to hire my own team etc. The way I saw things was that since my education doesn’t open the doors I want, I make damn sure that my experience speaks volumes.
The point I am trying to make here that we all worked some pretty awful customer service jobs just to gain the experience that will allow us to walk into an interview with our head held high and feel confident. What really grinds my gears is the assumption that a 6 month internship is the same as 3-5 experience. Trust me, its not. If the only role that you’ve ever had is entry level, please don’t waste my time. Refusing to apply for a entry level role because you* think you have experience is a slap in the face of everyone who busted their butts to get there.
There are great examples even in the PF community. Carrie is a great example of where hard works gets you.
The second issue has to do more with ethics than anything else.
I have worked with, and heard of freelancers who, for whatever reason, take on roles that they have no way of being able to handle. Doing a skill-set audit is extremely important, and a tool in your arsenal that you should always be on top of. For example, when a company hires me to be the subject matter expert, I need/want to make sure that I fully qualified to jump in and help with the project. Thinking that I can hack it not only makes me look bad, but it also wastes the companies time and money.
I’ve come across far too many people who BS their way to having an unsuspecting client hire, and then get stuck because they don’t know how to do the work that the clients needs. Having been in school for a really long time, I know a lot of students who admit that they want to succeed with the minimal amount of effort possible. They have expectations of earning 55K salaries when they graduated, even tho they lack work experience. This, ladies and gentlemen, is the entitlement generation. I was a part of it until reality kicked in and I noticed that no one was going to hand a huge pay-check without me proving myself.
This is where desperation kicks in. Especially when people want to have “side gigs“. I know that are times where you need that project, and money is tight, and you have to do what you have to do. The most helpful thing to do in situations like that is to have a “tribe” or a network that you can rely on. For example,if you know that you can’t design a logo, but you take a project that includes that task, find a designer that you can work with on a contingent basis. Ask for a discount in exchange for bring them more work in the future.
The most important thing that I want to stress here is that this is people’s hard earned money that you’re asking for. Would you pay someone like yourself? Would you like it if your parents dealt with someone like you? That is my ethics standard. Having worked one too many “hackjob” providers, I can assure that nothing kills your credibility faster.