Apologies go out if you’ve been peeved lately by my inundation of tweets. Unemployment has allowed me to throw my hat – and opinions – into a number of Twitter chats. I helped in my fair share of branded Twitter chats but never engaged with them more actively until now. The reason for this is because I’m mostly interested in spreading what I already know about social media in to conversations regardless of what the topic is plus I have an inherent desire to spark dialogues – no matter how silly or controversial the matter. That being said, I was happy to have stumbled upon #millennialchat – lead by @MillennialChat every Tuesday at 3:30 pm eastern time – this afternoon. They herald themselves as the glue that connects millennials with other millennials by chatting about millennials. Clearly this was worth indulging.
I’ve always been intrigued by the way that members of different generations function with one another within the work place. Well, to say “always” is a bit of a lie – the idea never crossed my mind until I found myself to be the youngest member of my last team. It was really interesting to see the way that people who grew up with the internet and people who grew up and then got slapped in the face with the internet collaborated, especially because I worked at a digital agency. It got me thinking – perhaps being millennial gave me a bit of a leg up in the digital world?
The first question during the #millennialchat was the idea of crowdsourcing and later lead to discussions on collaboration. I’ve always been of the thought that they are indeed synonyms – with “crowdsourcing” being the more buzzworthy word of the two, hence making it more millennial than the other. I felt the urge to respond faster than anyone else participating in the chat – “Need to source your target audience to gauge their level of interest in your ideas. It’s the new focus group.” This seemed to get a good response from everyone in the group and warranted some retweets and follow up questions. To answer that, I’ve observed that a lot of my millennial-aged peers, and the majority of them (even other generations) tend to work best in a collaborative environment; this being the reason why we had a number of really great brainstorms.
This then brought me back to a number of conversations I’ve had with my mentor, whose reciprocal theorizing you can read on his blog, Reciprocity Theory, and twittlings @dfossas. A lot of our discussions tend revolve around the human experience, and in one particular instance we got to talking about the millennial age — aka my peeps. Let’s face it, we’re a group of people who have tended to been brought up with the standard belief that a collaborative environment is the best way to educate. Hence the reason members of my generation worked on seemingly a significant number of group projects while growing up. You might have a good idea, but your partner might have another point of view, and together you can make a super-idea – voila! Or maybe it’s because your chemistry teacher didn’t want you to blow up your classroom so she paired you with someone who wasn’t getting a crappy grade – I digress.
Regardless, a number of us were raised in environments where collaboration was key, and while I’m still new to the “real world” it’s interesting to see that while we are all certainly more than capable of coming up with amazing ideas (or whatever else it is you’re crowdsourcing) on our own, it’s when a number of people come together that amazingness happens. This, of course is not the case all the time. Many of us have seen crowdsourcing/collaborating destroy what would have been awesome, earth-shattering ideas. But maybe it’s the idea that millennials are so acquainted with working together that collaboration has somehow become fostered into the real world as well.
Either way, I eagerly anticipate getting the transcript of our conversation from this afternoon and to join future chats.