Recently, strategy+business (February 22, 2011) published a fascinating article titled The Rise of Generation C. These people, born after 1990, are called Generation C because they are connected, communicating, content-centric, computerized, community oriented, always clicking. “This is the first generation that has never known any reality other than that defined and enabled by the Internet, mobile devices, and social networking.” Most own cell phones and computers but Generation C people prefer to communicate by Facebook and text messages. “Being connected around the clock will be the norm in 2020 – indeed it will be a prerequisite for participation in society.” Already, “digital communication channels have replaced much of the physical interaction of prior generations.”
This is more than futuristic fantasy or interesting sociological analysis. C-generation connectivity already is impacting how we relate, do business, educate, learn, work, lead, make decisions, run political campaigns, engage in therapy and live our lives. Corporations, healthcare, travel, entertainment, diplomacy and even governments will be forced to change as 24/7 connectivity and social networking become the norm worldwide. What does this say about the way we manage crises, make ethical decisions, evangelize or do ministry? What are some practical implications?
- The more overwhelmed, anxious or the older we get, the more we are likely to resist, deny or ignore changes like these. And the more irrelevant we will become.
- Ignore trends like these and we become reactive, deluged by the changes. Better to be like the wise leaders of the Old Testament tribe of Issachar who “understood the signs of the times and knew the best course…to take” (I Chronicles 12:32). They understood the trends as best they could and were proactive in adapting and making changes.
- No one person can keep abreast of all the changes so we connect with others who are knowledgeable where we are not. We trust in God who has put us in this place, at this time, for his purposes, to be part of this social revolution.
- See this as an exciting, incredible time to be alive, living, leading, and encouraging others.
How are you handling these changes? Please comment.