The Economist has a stupid article, Managing the Facebookers which claims that the net generation will suffer int he recession:
Once again, the touchy-feely management fads that always spring up in years of plenty (remember the guff about “the search for meaning” and “the importance of brand me”) are being ditched in favour of more brutal command-and-control methods. Having grown up in good times, Net Geners have laboured under the illusion that the world owed them a living. But hopping between jobs to find one that meets your inner spiritual needs is not so easy when there are no jobs to hop to. And as for that sabbatical: here’s a permanent one, sunshine.
The article is unencumbered by evidence: it reads more like wishful thinking by some curmudgeonly old hack who resents the rise of younger, smarter, better connected and more self-confident rivals.
It is quite plausible that the exact opposite might happen and that the economic upheaval will accelerate trends in the workplace towards the tools and attitudes of the Net Generation. It seems to be the industry dinosaurs that are going bust (think General Motors and Woolworths) not the new economy (Amazon is doing well). At a time of belt-tightening and rapid change, there will be a premium for people who can collaborate effectively, are comfortable working in teams and multi-tasking, and able to adapt rapidly to new ways of working.
Maybe the cosh is actually hovering over the gnarly old bosses who have resisted change for the last decade, not the facebook generation?