Teaching the new generation
Okay, so this is not a scientific study or research, but nevertheless something that I have experienced personally and would like to share. As I have been teaching the younger generation recently (University Business undergrads, mainly), it strikes me that the approach to learning is very different than how I grew up. Here are some of my general observations, and I will try to be objective, rather than judgmental... (1) many things are competing for attention span of the students; (2) overall reduced interest in what is going on in the world (current events, business, society, etc.); (3) need for multiple multimedia tools to help learn/retain subjects; (4) expectation that the learning process is structured and unambiguous; (5) a 'go-with-the-flow' attitude on how future may look like - less desire to draw a clear/early path from 'now' to the future; (6) less concerned about how the learning fit into a future career path; (7) competitive, yet less driven by fixed short/long term goals; and (8) showing engagement/interest in more subtle ways.
Interestingly, I am learning as much from this process as perhaps my students. I am learning how to be a better teacher...a better communicator. After all, teaching is meaningless unless you are able to communicate the concept effectively.
I am certain this is also true when leading/managing the new generation in a business/industry setting. Just using familiar methodologies may not be as efficient or effective as you may think it is. It is critical to adapt to the newer generation if you want to drive for collective success.