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Monday, October 18, 2010

A NOTE FROM THE FOUNDER: Self-entitlement (and Why We Deserve It)

Self-entitlement (and Why We Deserve It)

by Adam J. Kovitz

One of the biggest complaints I hear about from employers of the baby boom generation of their millennial counterparts is their frustration at their sense of self-entitlement.  This self-entitlement manifests itself as narcissism, overconfidence and self-centeredness and leaves others wondering if today's college graduates are really properly prepared for the "real" world that awaits them in business.

According to Jean M. Twenge in her article, Self-entitlement of grads can be a curse,  a study in the Journal of Youth and Adolescence found that:

"two-thirds of college students believed their professors should raise their grades if the student simply explained that he or she was trying hard. One-third believed that if they attended most of the classes for a course, they deserved at least a B in the class. Almost a third thought they should be able to schedule the final exam around their vacation."

From where did these kids get this?

From us, according to many millennial experts;  the combination of Child Protection Laws of the 1980s and 1990s, the increased connectivity and resources offered through the internet and the availability of mobile smart devices seems to have provided a "triple witching" effect on our future leaders and business innovators.

The problem:  growing up in a world of "you can do or be anything you want as long as you put your mind to it" and "everyone gets a trophy, whether they win or lose" is great until it comes into direct conflict with the "real" world of economic Darwinism, fierce competition where ruthlessness and cold-bloodedness is rewarded.

In the "real" world, politicians are entitled to live by a different set of standards and laws than the people they are supposed to represent.  

In the "real" world, business leaders who cause the largest recorded environmental disasters are entitled to participate in yacht races while entire ecosystems die and thousands lose their means of economic support as a result.

In the "real" world, those who understand the ways of money are entitled to profit by separating "fools" from their own money despite years of earning their trust.

Those "durned" kids...

In my humble opinion, we have to look at the examples we're setting and understand the consequences of the disconnects between what we espouse and what we truly live.

If we did that, we would have only two viable scenarios:
1.)  Either, educate our kids at the youngest possible ages to understand that the world we have brought them into is more than likely to treat them like cattle.  It is unfair, unjust and uncooperative.  It is designed to enslave them and keep them alive long enough to outlive their revenue-producing usefulness, or
2.)  Continue to educate our kids the way we have (perhaps tempering the entitlement with personal responsibility) and change our current "real" world into something that is more in alignment with the intentions of our message to them.  Let's cooperate, let's coexist and let's find ways to unite, as we all are deserving of the greatness we imagine for ourselves.

Which do you choose and what do you truly deserve?

All my best,


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The Emergence of The Relationship Economy

The Emergence of The Relationship Economy
The Emergence of the Relationship Economy features TNNWC Founder, Adam J. Kovitz as a contributing author and contains some of his early work on The Laws of Relationship Capital. The book is available in hardcopy and e-book formats. With a forward written by Doc Searls (of Cluetrain Manifesto fame), it is considered a "must read" for anyone responsible for the strategic direction of their business. If you would like to purchase your own copy, please click the image above.


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