Attuning to the Facebook Generation

Once again Will Richardson in a much longer post on ‘Transparency = Leadership’ comments on a gem of a post from the Wall Street Journal Blogs by Gary Hamel about the now familiar Generation F, the Facebook Generation. Gary warns the Fortune 500 companies to beware Generation F as they have fixed views. I recommend you read all of Gary’s post but I think the first few of the Generation F views are worth noting:

  1. All ideas compete on an equal footing.
  2. Contribution counts for more than credentials.
  3. Hierarchies are natural, not prescribed.
  4. Leaders serve rather than preside.
  5. Tasks are chosen, not assigned.
  6. Groups are self-defining and self-organizing.

A number of these ideas come from Clay Shirky’s Here Comes Everybody about self-organising enterprises of all kinds. Like Will I feel perhaps the most important message from Generation F  is the second listed above that Gary expands as:

2. Contribution counts for more than credentials
When you post a video to YouTube, no one asks you if you went to film school. When you write a blog, no one cares whether you have a journalism degree. Position, title, and academic degrees—none of the usual status differentiators carry much weight online. On the Web, what counts is not your resume, but what you can contribute.

This corresponds exactly to my own experience of social media to date, and is one more nail in the coffin of experts/professionals with long years of training expecting to receive adulation.


About Michael Rees
Academic in IT interested in Web 2.0 and social media

One Response to Attuning to the Facebook Generation

  1. David says:

    That certainly seems like a ‘gem of a post’ to me too. Thanks.

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