I love Millennials. I’ll admit it.
Even though I’m a GenX’er at heart, I admire the chutzpah that Millennials have to call out the establishment (which GenX does too) but I really admire the belief that they have that by calling it out, change will happen (about which GenX is fundamentally cynical).
Which is why I was smiling when a participant in EY’s women’s leadership program shared the contents of the program with HuffPost to “out” what a bag of garbage it was. In my mind, this must have been a Millennial woman because an X’er wouldn’t have and a Z’er probably wasn’t in the program yet. And I was cheering her on.
You can read about the leadership program that referred to women’s brains as pancakes and men’s brains as waffles. You can read about how women need to be concise in their words because they’re so verbose. You can read other tidbits of wisdom around appropriate attire and wardrobe advice.
And EY went through the public relations wringer for a few days until they admitted they hadn’t reviewed the content of the program. They promised to eliminate it as outdated and out of line with their corporate values. And I chuckled because I’ve seen these same kinds of programs at other companies. It was “outed” by an EY employee, but that doesn’t mean this kind of nonsense was being peddled only at EY.
And as usual, I started looking at it from a cultural conditioning angle because really these programs are designed for people to be successful in an existing power structure. They are not designed to help anyone evolve or change that structure. And that’s why they look so bad when exposed to the light.
Take a look here for more in the article I wrote titled, “Why Are Some Leadership Development Programs Such Train Wrecks?” And let’s all hope that these programs are dead and buried for good.