John McCann

I.M. Generation

In Culture & society on April 11, 2006 at 12:01 pm

An article in the New York Times tells us that the business world has been invaded by the I.M. generation and that it will never be the same again. Prior to their arrival, business correspondences were conducted via email and voice mail, which are now on the decline in more and more firms due to viruses and spam as well as overflowing voice mailboxes.

Now a generation of office workers who grew up with instant messaging has gained control. They have made I.M. the new black, the latest trend in information technology. Along the way, they have changed how the corporate world converses and have built a series of new communication applications.

"With I.M., I know that someone is available, so I can take rapid action to support more real-time operations," said Ashley Roach, a server product manager at Jabber Inc., which sells open-source instant messaging server software.

Instant messaging is becoming an important ingredient for corporations that want to respond rapidly to demands from inside and outside. They are using it to tie customers closer together and to enable workers to communicate across the globe.

I look at this as just one example of the changes that are coming as youth enter the job market and bring along their tech habits acquired in high school and college. They simply participate in life in ways that differ from their elders, and they will participate in the work world in similar ways.

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