Who Cares?

If you have been following the recent blogs of my colleagues, the collection portrays an interesting tapestry of middle-class USA. They write about people, specifically about traits like experience and wisdom, effort versus skill, and the status of modern day written communication.

WHO CARES?

That only applies to Gen-X and Baby Boomers

Apparently, the 21st century’s impression of you is reduced to your ability to articulate an entire hypothesis in 140 Twitter characters, how great your Facebook page is, your count of followers on LinkedIn, and how tech savvy you are. “Old school” values like those depicted in the blogs don’t seem to matter anymore, especially to Millennials.

Marketers tend to focus on a lot of energy on Millennials. Their lives are deconstructed on many different levels, and there’s research to be found on anything ranging from their top financial goals to the ways in which they use their phones. Those analyses are all helpful in their own right, but—stepping back to the big picture for a moment—how many of these prized individuals are there in the U.S.? The latest data out from the Census Bureau gives a sense of how large this coveted generation is:

  • Ages 18-24: 31.2 million (9.7%)
  • Ages 25-34: 44.1 million (13.7%)

In their last published stats, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicted that by 2015 millennials would overtake the majority representation of the workforce and by 2030 this hyper-connected, savvy generation will make up 75% of the workforce.

Millennials are accustomed to being connected anywhere, at any time. As Alastair Mitchell wrote in Wired:

Millennials are a generation that will seek to solve problems themselves and if they’re not satisfied with the technology being offered to them, they’ll find something else to use. While 16% of office workers use Dropbox to store work documents, this rises to 31% of 18-24-year olds and 24% of 25-31-year olds. 22% of both age groups also use Google Drive and 29% of 18-24-year olds use iCloud.

Millennials are not just influencing the direction of software but driving expectations and forcing supplies to evaluate and revise “old school” business processes to accommodate the 21st century business model.

Software developers, like Spitfire Management, who accept change and endorse, rather than ignore, the Millennial force will flourish.

A founding principle of Spitfire is the requirement to be on the leading edge of technology. So how have we responded to the Millennial force for years?

Here is a short list about our Spitfire Project Management System; our roadmap for the future is even more exciting.

  • 2003 Web/cloud-based project management
  • 2004 Integration with Microsoft Office suite
  • 2005 Advanced web/cloud collaboration
  • 2008 Optional ERP extensions
  • 2010 Android mobile app
  • 2012 API’s streamlining system integration
  • 2014 Multi-Cloud cloud to “play well in the sandbox with others”
  • 2014 Cloud synchronization with Box, Dropbox, Google Drive, etc.
  • 2016 Active cloud synchronization version control with audit trails

To pull this off we relied on some “old school” traits like experience, wisdom, effort, skill and communications. So, while we learn from the Millennials, we still have a thing or two to offer them too. Maybe they do care!

If you are looking for a project management application that will keep your company on the leading edge of market demands, give us a call.

 

 

Communication

One of my sons is a .NET developer (a.k.a. software programmer). He recently told us about a task he was given that proved challenging and time-consuming. But he used some problem-solving skills and completed the task, feeling pretty good about his accomplishment. He then sent an email about it to the appropriate persons. Afterward, his supervisor surprised him with high praise—not for the job itself, but for the well written email!

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Experience Matters

I was tickled the other day to hear from an old colleague via Linkedin. She kindly reminisced about how in bygone days I taught her something about SQL, and now she is mentoring others. While I remember working with this person, and distinctly recall that she was worth the investment of time to explain things to (which is high praise, as there have been too many who have not reached that bar), I cannot recall what it was that I might have helped her learn. It was just normal, professional experience stuff.

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Is a Picture Worth a Thousand Words?


Recently, I sat through a product demo where the presenter filled most of the presentation time flipping from graph to graph to illustrate the power and flexibility of his product.

I must admit the presenter had put a great deal of thought into his storyboard and how to best show “what sells.” His delivery was crisp and polished.

He had me sold on a great graph presentation tool—but that wasn’t what I was really looking for.

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Save Now or Save Later

Whoever invented the coupon was a very smart person. The psychology behind coupons makes them effective. Sure, if there is something you were going to buy in a certain store anyway, a coupon just saves you money. But many people will buy something they weren’t thinking of buying before, just to “save” money with the coupon, or they will go to the store offering the coupon without checking to see if another store has lower prices. And once in the store, they might even buy other things at full price. In the end, people usually spend more money on that particular trip at that particular store than if they had not gotten the coupon at all.  And this is why stores give out coupons in the first place.

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