Comment on the "Most Praised Generation Goes to Work" by Jeffery Zealow.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think that one of the most significant social implications that comes out of Zaslow's article is the idea that there is fundamental collision between the way this current generation going to work has been raised and the reality of the workplace in which they enter.  Zaslow's point is that this current generation of millennials who are entering the workforce have been the benefactors and recipients of praise to no end.  This particular group has become what Zaslow refers to as "narcissistic praise-junkies."  The challenge is that they enter a workforce that is particularly devoid of praise.  In fact, the workplace they enter is difficult, cold, and fairly harsh.  While corporations have hired "praise consultants," the reality is that the method by which the modern workers enter, armed with their constant and consistent praise from the earliest of ages, is not something reciprocated in the workplace setting.  The harsh realities of what work is represents ends in which there is little opportunity to validate their own past experiences.  This results in challenging inter-work situations, as with challenges in "basking in other people's glories," as well as a challenge with the fundamental nature of the workplace where economic reality determines most, if not all, of being.  The collision between the need to feel special and appreciated and a work setting that fails to function in this manner can result in a variety of conditions in people, one of the most important being the embodiment of fundamental misery because what exists in the subjective is nowhere near replicated in the external.