Subtitles and transcripts of podcasts

Subtitles and transcripts are available for some podcasts linked to this blog, for example for all videos on ted.com. Under the video, select Subtitles available in, and to the right of the video, select Open interactive transcript.
For Russian readers / Для русскоязычных читателей: Для некоторых подкастов, описанных в блоге, например, для подкастов на сайте ted.com, есть субтитры и записи текстов. Под видео выберите Subtitles available in Russian, а справа от видео выберите Open interactive transcript.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

What Makes Gen Xers Tick?

In the Harvard Business Review podcast "What Makes Gen Xers Tick?", (audio, 17 min) book author and blogger Tammy Erickson argues that work motivation of Generation X (those born in 1960s-1970s) is quite different from that of the preceding Baby Boomers generation. Gen X'ers are much less motivated by promotions if these narrow their expertise, box them into more specialized corporate roles, and thus reduce their future choices of getting another job.

Only 54% of Gen X'ers say that they would like to move on to a job with more responsibility. That's down from 69% of Baby Boomers, when asked the same question at the same age.
This partly comes from the costs of moving up, which is often associated with a relocation. X'ers want to keep as many options open as possible, and "stay light on their feet".Interestingly, a significant percent of X'ers in corporations are silently preparing themselves to become entrepreneurs. This fact is often lost on corporate leaders.
What is Erickson's advice? She suggests that corporate leaders should motivate Gen X'ers with job variety and compensation tied to the breadth of expertise, rather than motivate only with the vertical rank in the managerial ladder. Organizations should shift from the idea of vertical promotions to the idea of lateral moves - there is not much room at the top anyhow. Interestingly, many in the software engineering community also strongly advocate a related idea of a dual-ladder organization (one ladder for technical experts, second ladder for managers). See, for example, my earlier post on Frederick P. Brooks: The Mythical Man-Month. Erickson suggests that corporate leaders present opportunities for Gen X'ers in terms of new options (such as skills) that they open up - the more options, the better. Gen X'ers should educate the managers about their priorities as well.

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