Future Generations Within the Lead Change Group, there are many diverse perspectives and experiences to tap. Millennials are the next generation up and they are a large and energetic group. Each generation has a responsibility, I believe, to embrace the young and old and learn from each other. With all this as background, we posed the question to the Lead Change Google+ group:

What one career or leadership insight would you want a 20-something to know now?

Highlighted below are a snapshot of the answers:

Kate Nasser: You can achieve anything you want IF your work ethic, emotional and social intelligence, and perseverance match your desire!

Joy Guthrie: There’s something to learn in every situation you find yourself. The truth of the matter is that on average people change careers at least 5 times in their lifetime. Learn from each experience as you build your future. Don’t give up on a situation too soon. You may find that what you thought you didn’t like was actually something you loved.

Paul LaRue: I would have to say it’s to edify others always before yourself. The world today needs people who encourage and build up more than ever before. It’s a quality that transcends any career or calling in life. Great statesmen (Disraeli), business leaders, politicians (Lincoln) and entertainers have always left those they interacted with a more profound sense of self-worth.

Christopher Avery: How to practice responsibility – to learn, to grow, to shape your reality at will.

Mike Henry Sr.: Regardless of the situation, look for ways to be as valuable as possible. And your boss, your team, and your customers are the people who determine value. We never get to determine the value of our own efforts.

Lynn Ferguson-Pinet: Take in all the experience they can and ask “do I love what I’m doing.” So many people stay in jobs later in life because they never asked themselves that question enough. Later in life they find they have no choice but to stay where they are or what they are doing because they have so much invested in it.

Barry Smith: If you want to succeed at anything, you better plan on giving 70% and receiving 30%.

Terri Klass: I would say that building relationships is key and be open minded.

Great insights to pull forward and use fully, no matter the generation you may be in.

My addition:

Take the time to really understand what you want in life and career and ensure you are gaining momentum in the direction you intend to go. Focus on always learning, growing, and getting better at what you so.

Take the Step. Engage Another Generation.

We have many generations in the workplace today, more than ever before. Our responsibility across each generation is to engage with each other, share our experiences, and raise each other up in the way we lead. We cannot be divisive. We cannot develop stereotypes. We need to remember diversity of experience and insights strengthen us. There is too many challenges ahead, and we need to work together.

Take the step. Share your experiences with someone from another generation. At the same time, ask questions to learn from another generation. We need to have a two-way exchange so we build better leadership paths ahead.

Join in! What one career or leadership insight would you want a 20-something to know now?

Jon Mertz
Jon is a vice president of marketing in the healthcare software industry. His background consists of an MBA from The University of Texas at Austin and working for companies like Deloitte, IBM, and BMC Software. Outside of his professional life, Jon brings together a community to inspire Millennial leaders and close the gap between two generations of leaders. Connect with Jon on Twitter @ThinDifference or on Facebook.
Jon Mertz

@ThinDifference

With a thin difference between two generations, a vast opportunity exists to create a big leadership story. Close the gap & enable Millennial leaders to excel.
Where are you in the Leadership Blend Model and what actions will you now take? http://t.co/HEed97F609 - 6 mins ago
Jon Mertz