Quote in new chapter on the workplace in Generation Me, from an interview by Jean Twenge, in 2008:
Drew Lichtenberger, a young manager at Northwestern Mutual, made some changes to their college student internship program a few years ago. Many interns found it difficult to see themselves as financial service providers–it didn’t fit their identities. They were having a hard time transitioning from being college students to professionals. He helped them see that they could bring their individual identity and goals to the job. Lichtenberger asked interns, “What’s your worth? What are your gifts? What do you want to do? You need to be finding that. You need to do that for yourself.” Lichtenberger suggests having more personal conversations with employees. “Get him out of the office, sit down, have coffee with him, and just say, ‘Tell me, how did you decide to become an attorney? How did you make that decision? Tell me about your mom. Tell me about your dad.’ You just get to know them.” When managers protest that this type of conversation isn’t’ billable, or that they don’t have time for it, Lichtenberger has a simple answer: “The companies that will be more successful are the ones that would do that.” (p. 271)
Twenge, J. M. (2014). Generation Me: Why today’s Young American’s Are More Confident, Assertive, Entitled–and More Miserable Than Ever Before. New York: Simon and Schuster.