My Generation
What problems do you want to solve?

What problems do you want to solve?

From Broadway to the barn, from paleontologists to comedians, we can change the conversation with young people with just a couple questions.

I was talking with my seven year old the other day when out of the blue she says: "I like your job, Mom. I like what you do. I want your job when I grow up. Either that, or work at Sea World with the dolphins."

Well, those are basically the same.

And I instantly flashed to a conversation with my oldest just a few days prior, when she informed me that she either wanted to be a farm wife like me and do something on the side…or she wanted to be a famous actress on Broadway.

Again, farm wives and Broadway actresses are constantly mistaken for each other.

This vocational disparity is apparently not uncommon because a good friend also shared her son’s career aspirations: either a paleontologist or a comedian. (Paging Ross Geller…)

My kids are 13, 10 and 7 now and I’m here to tell you, my greatest joy is watching them become the people they’re going to be. Sure, they screw up, but their sense of humor is on point, their hearts are huge, they’re thinking about what they want in life. And what they can do. And how they can make that happen.

And then I read this earlier this week:

“Don’t ask kids what they want to be when they grow up, but what problems do they want to solve. This changes the conversation from who do I want to work for, to what do I need to learn to be able to do that..” --Jaime Casap, Google global education evangelist

Well. There we go. That’s the thing, isn’t it? That’s how people are fed, technologies are produced and people are organized. It’s how we make change and get things done.

What problem do you want to solve? And what do you need to learn in order to do that?

Ask your people and let me know what they say. I’m going to ask mine, too.

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