Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Growing up online

An article from the WSJ argues that the workplace environment will change due to kids experience and expectations that they gain from being online.

It's an interesting article and it brings up great points such as...
  • Leaders serve, don't preside
  • Tasks are chosen, not assigned
  • Power comes from sharing not hording
  • Contribution counts more than credentials
It seems these lessons won't be limited to the workplace. Even the slowest-moving arenas like education and politics would benefit, though it will likely require their respective monopolies to open up.

Even before spending a lot of time online, I suspect many people felt it should be this way but the existing authority kept the status quo in place. People were forced to learn in public schools, work as interns to get their first job, and slowly work their way up in politics. We're seeing many counter examples lately - charter schools, kids out of high school starting companies, President Obama's run for president - all examples of change.

Personally, I'm glad the old way of doing things is being challenged. The smaller, faster organization is not only more effective, but more natural. I suspect we'll see that it's less of a change or advance, and more of a return to normalcy.

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