The current system for transitioning from school to work is broken. But the problem (and solution) is bigger than a frustrating job hunt. This is that bigger story.
Technology hardly seems like a revolution or disruption to those of us (millennials) who grew up exploring the latest hardware and downloading dozens of apps. A second screen feels like second nature to us.
But technology is transforming how we find information, relate to others, shop, work, and even relax (ahem, Netflix). Modern technologies are changing faster than any other invention in human history. Massive change has become the norm. Our mobile-first world of instant access and notification redefines operating in real-time.
With this massive change comes unprecedented opportunity. We now have the capacity to connect with an unlimited number of people around the world. We can access countless resources via apps, ebooks, online tools, e-commerce, and more recently, virtual reality. Never before has education been so readily available and at such low costs (e.g. MOOCs, ebooks, etc.). The possibilities are endless.
Anyone can create their own platform, show up, speak up, and deliver value. Anyone who wants to can connect with others, build a product or service, and grow their own company.
You can do anything you want! Create anything you want. Become anyone you want.
While you have the potential to do anything or become anyone, you certainly can’t do everything or pursue every different kind of career. If you say yes to one opportunity, you’re simultaneously saying no to at least a dozen other possibilities.
FOMO (fear of missing out) paralyzes us. If I choose this, what else will I be missing out on? Or what if I try this and I discover I can’t do it? Often the easiest option is to do nothing – perhaps under the pretense of ‘exploring my options’.
Fear of failure plagues us. Once we decide to pursue a project or career, we might not succeed (at first, or ever depending on the project). Suddenly, ‘you can do anything you want’ becomes an elusive mantra used to judge millennials for not living up to their potential.
As millennials, we’re eager to jump in and create something amazing, but often we don’t know where to start. Or how to get started. Potential possibilities often leave us dreaming instead of doing.
What if we refused to waste time looking for the absolute best choice? What if we dared to take action?
What if we could sustainably integrate work and learning?
Say hello to the Apprenticeship Movement. We’re bucking the old, broken system for transitioning from college to career. And we’re embracing a modern apprenticeship model where continuous learning is combined with real-world experience. It’s a mindset fueled by growth.
We know we’re going to mess up (a lot), but we refuse to give up. And though we can’t pursue every possibility, we’re choosing to take action. We ‘pick ourselves‘ and create art that matters.
We actively seek mentors and coaches to accelerate our learning. We aren’t afraid to ask questions and challenge the norm. Instead of working from a place of scarcity, we work generously. Our aim is to produce art of exceptional value for others.
We take pride in our craftsmanship – so much so, we’ve created an Apprentice Pledge that summarizes the beliefs behind the Apprenticeship Movement.
The possibility paradox isn’t the last chapter. We refuse to be paralyzed by the fear of missing out. We’re writing our own ending to the story. We’re taking action.
It won’t be easy and it’s certainly not for the faint-hearted. But it will transform the way we work and learn.
1. Persist with Stubborn Self-Determination | Instead of depending on and blaming others, I will take responsibility for my future, think for myself, and find my own answer.
2. Take Action | Instead of theorizing, I will act. I will take initiative, learn from failure, and do my best to produce results today.
3. Seek Out the Master | Instead of going it alone, I will surround myself with coaches and mentors to receive their guidance and wisdom.
4. Give More Than I Get | Instead of getting more than I give, I will take pride in the work I do and generously bring great things into the world that create exceptional value for others.
5. Work with Passion | Instead of indifference, I will love what I do and pour my creativity and energy into it.