“They are variously known as the Net Generation, Millennials, Generation Y or Digital Natives. But whatever you call this group of young people—roughly, those born between 1980 and 2000—there is a widespread consensus among educators, marketers and policymakers that digital technologies have given rise to a new generation of students, consumers, and citizens who see the world in a different way. Growing up with the internet, it is argued, has transformed their approach to education, work and politics.”
Economist, ‘The net generation, unplugged’
Don is an authority on business strategy and the chairman of nGenera Insight.
He first coined the term Net Generation
I implore you to watch the first 10 minutes of this interview
This is the first generation to be bathed in bits
This generation has better active memory and switching ability
The internet is eating the neo-cortex of youth today
The internet Is not the problem, it’s like blaming the library for ignorance
There is a danger that we will leave a trail of digital crumbs as we go through life
Previously Big Brother (Governmenet) and Little Brother (Corporations) controlled information dissemination, however Baby Brother (Net Generation) is where you have all these people wilfully giving away all this information about themselves.
Dave Chalmers from HP discussing the rise of the digital native and its impact
We are seeing fundamental shifts in how organisations are having to adapt to meet the demands of the workforce that is coming towards them
Their attitude to information and sharing is fundamentally different
Why shouldn’t corporate data be shared
Chief Innovation Officer for Dell Services
Are your digital natives restless?
New generation of workers, these are the digital natives they come better equipped and more knowlegable than maybe your own IT organsisation they have high expectations of information being available anytime anyplace.
Please watch the first 3 minutes of this clip
Best Buy CEO – “give people a license to self-organise to create value”
The most important people in the company are the Blue Shirts who are closest to the customer
25.000 workers have created a social network called “Blue Shirt Nation” where staff use these new tools for collaboration to share and resolve problems
You shouldn’t focus on your customers you should engage them
Typically, the front door to any organisation providing services has either been via the contact centre, website, self-service portal or email.
The fundamental difference now is that the Net Generation will look to forums, social and business networks for access to instant information. They are less disposed to wait for a slower response from a process-bound service provider.
The increasing use of communication backchannels (Twitter @companyhelpname or #hashtag) means that service providers must now actively listen to the chatterati and be pro-active in sensing and responding to Net Generation real-time feedback.
At Best Buy the “Blue Shirt Nation” social network of 25,000 customer facing staff has amassed a tremendous body of tacit knowledge about resolution of known issues and errors which are stored in the cloud and not readily available to the service organisation.
Looking forward, it is not clear if there is still a requirement to bear the cost of a passive, re-active global Level 1 service desk when internal employees and customers are finding their own solutions across Business Units and outside of company boundaries.
So, put yourself in the shoes of your Net Generation employees / consumers. It is important to recognise that their expectation of access to information and collaboration is fundamentally different. You must address their requirement for new interactions by designing next generation services.
Recruit savvy Net Generation individuals to help re-invent the service ecosystem so that there is more transparency and moments of engagement at the organisations perimeter. In achieving this aim it should be possible to improve the overall service experience. That is the least the Net Generation expect and if this utility is not delivered then Net Generation consumers will be lost to you and go elsewhere.
The old believe everything, the middle age suspect everything and the young know everything