On Post-It notes, clever friends and the iGeneration

In the wee hours of a summer morning back in 1985, I returned to my college apartment after an evening out and found a two-paged Post-it note stuck to my door. 

The note did not surprise me as that was how we communicated in the pre-cellphone era. I was struck, however, by its form.

Deep in the throes of summer term finals, my roommate Colleen had attributed and footnoted the entire thing.

“You Ibid-ed my message,” I said to her with great respect when I saw her the next day. “Well done!”

I kept that message for 35 years and today I am proud to announce that my Ibid-ing friend Colleen has written a brilliant book I highly recommend.

“Disconnected: How to Use People Data to Deliver Realness, Meaning, and Belonging at Work” will be published tomorrow on Amazon and, for a limited time, you can purchase an e-copy for a mere 99 cents.

The book offers keen insights into the iGeneration, what hurdles they face, how we can head them off and why it is important that we try. I read an advance copy of the book several weeks ago and I found the book fascinating. It is particularly so given the way this global pandemic has altered many of our working situations.

Colleen’s book encourages managers to create an inclusive company culture that connects employees across locations and generations, to leverage the tech brilliance of younger workers and to use “people data” to find a balance between online work and work in real life.

But, I think her book transcends the workplace and gives us all — parents, educators, co-workers and friends — insights into the post millennial iGeneration. 

A passionate proponent of business networking, Colleen tells the story of Alicia, a lonely young woman who attended a networking workshop Colleen hosted. Alicia told her she didn’t know how to talk to anyone except family members.

“That just seems so sad and I couldn’t understand why,” Colleen said. “I learned later that a lot of young adults were suffering with loneliness and again I wanted to know why—- it didn’t make sense to me. So that’s what I decided to go out and explore — what was going on with young adults and what could their employers do about it to help, because they’re coming to work and they clearly need help.”

The book is full of anecdotes (I particularly enjoyed the story about Colleen’s dad being a good listener because I know and admire him as well), and data to support them.

You can order a hard copy or e-copy of the book on Amazon tomorrow.

Congratulations to my engineer-turned-author friend Colleen Long McFarland and thanks for the clever phone message.

This is Colleen and me, with our housemate Chris, during the summer of 1985.
And this, a little worse for the wear, is page two of the note she left me telling me that my boss at my summer internship wanted me to come in that morning.
This is my friend Colleen now. She doesn’t age. It’s ridiculous. She also helps leaders in IT at Beam Suntory in Chicago and, of course, is an excellent author.
These are her sons Daniel and Chris, two iGeneration members who are currently quarantined with their parents in the Chicago area.

4 thoughts on “On Post-It notes, clever friends and the iGeneration

  1. Interesting. I will be ordering a copy.
    There is something very special about supporting a friend’s success. Congratulations to Colleen and thanks to you, Laura.

    1. Colleen is also a 1983 Xavier grad. We met on the basketball team.
      (I think she took German though).
      Thanks for the support!

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