Napster Generation Influencing Business Practises
I’m too young to remember the rebellious youth of the punk movement. I am even too young to have appreciated at the time what the acid house generation did for the music genre. Those raves in and around the M25 and punk lyrics that shocked the music world 20/30 years ago have been mirrored in the paradime shift we have seen in the last 10 years. I believe this is what I’m calling the Napster Generation, who used technology and not art to stick it to the man. The arts will continue to produce big names and they will change the culture of countries but they are now joined at the table by the men of Silicon Valley, the business boys and girls of the Y Generation……
Throughout history there have been young successful people in business, these people tended to be smart in the way the business wanted them to be. They fitted into the culture that previously existed and were just smarter than average (or had daddy to thank for the hand out). They progressed faster than average for their age and were deemed to be the successful pot for their generation as they followed the predefined template for success. The internet has changed the world as we knew it, it is impossible to quantify the impact it has had on life and the way we interact with eachother. In the same vain the way that business is done has changed – significantly!
- In many companies the world over there are still guidelines, practises, procedures that stem back to the 1990’s used for how businesses should talk to their customers.
- We have Marketing Managers running departments including PR with no clue what is going on within social media with their brand.
- We have TV Execs running campaigns and pressuring the business not to include the website as it will ruin the brand image
These are not isolated cases, these are the frustrations that the Napster generations have to deal with day in day out. The benefit for the 20 something coming into the workplace right now is that the above issues are reducing every day. There are a significant amount of young(ish) people within business who are changing the tide on how businesses run.
You only have to look at the major players within the shift in the way we interact with eachother in the last 5 years.
Facebook (Mark Zuckerberg), Twitter (Jack Dorsey), and even to the Iphone (Steve Jobs)
These three ‘inventions’ are not just products, they are shift in the communication medium and a significant change in the social ecosystem for multiple generations. All three creators started their journeys into business young – and all three have had to fight the masses to get their products into the limelight as they didn’t fit the predefined mould of success.
I have one worry about this cycle of stagnant behaviour followed by rebellion of the youth – at some point I’m going to be the one clinging onto the old way – and when that day comes I hope that I can see the light quicker than a number of people currently in the important seats within businesses worldwide.