Ok, got some interesting feedback on the “Disloyal” article and thought I’d at least shoot over #2. I’ve had this situation more within the office and working with in-house interns than on the football field. There’s really no getting around “grunt work” as a player in the NFL, though some of the roles played on a roster can be “grunt like”.
But as I look at young people entering into the profession, I see a group highly motivated to move forward, but not wanting to stay in one place for very long. I wrote an article on www.thefootballeducator.com called Model Scouting? “Mind your manners” that touches on this subject. Also take a look at The “pecking order” of professional football front office management.
Remember to replace boss with coach, employer with team, and Gen Y or young person with player. In this case it could also be a scout or office intern.
Bruce Tulgan’s Newsletter, June 23, 2011 issue – 281st edition
The number two myth about Generation Y is that they won’t do the grunt work.
They’ll do the grunt work. I promise you they will do the grunt work. They’ll do the grunt work very well, very fast, all day long.
They’re so eager to prove themselves to you, they’re so eager to prove themselves to others; they will do the grunt work. If you don’t believe me, follow me around sometime when I’m working with the United States Army. You want to see a bunch of young people do a bunch of grunt work? Spend a day with some soldiers.
They’ll do the grunt work, but there are two catches.
The first catch is they won’t do the grunt work or anything else in exchange for vague promises about long-term rewards that may or may not vest in the deep, distant future. No way.
The second catch is, they won’t do the grunt work if they start to fear that nobody’s keeping track; if they start to fear that they are out of mind. And when they’re out of sight for very long, they start to worry that they might be out of mind. One young person we interviewed was telling us, “They had me down in this deep, dark basement going through boxes and boxes of old documents” and he says, “You know I was down there for seven hours.” Are you with me? Not seven days, not seven weeks, not seven months; seven hours. He said, “I was down there all by myself in this deep, dark basement for seven hours going through all these boxes of documents and I started to wonder, does anyone know I’m down here?”
Seven hours is long enough for a Gen Yer to decide, “You know what? I don’t really like this job.” They will leave the basement, go out and get another job; try it out. They might even decide, “I like the first job better.” They’ll go back to the basement, they’ll come up at the end of the day and you’ll never even know they were gone. They’ll do the grunt work. They’ll do anything; but they want to know that somebody is keeping track, somebody is helping them keep score, somebody is giving them credit for all that grunt work they’re doing. “And by the way, exactly how much of this grunt work do I have to do in order to earn some more interesting tasks?”