The Distracting Workplace Opportunity – Technology


My phone buzzes a lot, I get that. Between emails, texts, calls, Twitter and Facebook notifications I tend to be pretty connected to rest of the world. Some call this a distraction, I call this an opportunity.

I’m fortunate enough to have friends scattered across the world, from London to Sydney to Tokyo and New York. When I’m at work I tend to be fairly caught up at my desk, but I’m also able to consult and work with peers from other countries outside of that time. This is something that many gen ys are doing now – developing opportunities away from home, using their knowledge to help others, irrespective of where they are.

Twenty years ago these options weren’t gifted to society and it has created a divide – especially in client focused roles. Gen Y has a unique capacity to engage relevant customers and business opportunities from other sides of the world. When we discuss this with our baby boomer managers there’s a fusion of excitement and scepticism: it’s an opportunity creator, but viewed as a risky one.

Many entrepreneurs are now outsourcing branding design to websites that auction off the job to people around the world. Our interconnectedness is giving us an option to collaborate and develop.

For one, most studies in IT becoming defunct after two years of completion, being able to access current and relevant knowledge is critical for businesses.

When I asked a friend of mine what her biggest challenge at work was she said “Facebook, no questions”. Her boss put an embargo on the use of social media in their office, to the dismay of my friend who was the only person under-35 in that department. She protested by highlighting the ease of access to knowledge and issues that other businesses are facing, but to no avail.

Gen Y shouldn’t have to advocate for the growth and access to knowledge via social media, but it should be embraced; managers just need to learn how to harness the benefits, because they’re plentiful.

Rarely a week passes where technological developments aren’t leading news. Staying current isn’t a personal objective, it is a business outcome. Chief Executive Board’s research shows that the new high performer is adaptable and collaborative. Being technologically literate and able to prioritise is what is going to give Gen Y the edge in the workplace.

Gen Ys need to show how they’re using their resources, whatever that looks like, to their advantage – because there’s great opportunities for us to revolutionise the workplace

About the author

Lisa Mangelsdorf

I confess that I work to live rather than live to work. But when I can combine my passions into my work, I work best. This blog brings together discussions about one of my passions which is connecting people. I endeavour to fight the norm by chasing flexible working options and change seekers, hence my involvement with this blog. I'm fortunate to be connected with a global team at GAIA Insights. Retaining Gen Y within the workforce is an issue for most businesses across the globe. For help contact us because we know EXACTLY what they want from the workplace and we can help your business retain that key talent.


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