Today’s Voices as told by Penelope Trunk

Yesterday I was honored to be mentioned in a article written by the one and only Penelope Trunk.

*insert pause here for you to go read the article … yes you I’m still waiting, go read it and come back!*

For those of you who don’t know who Penelope is, here is a snippet of her bio from The Brazen Careerist on Yahoo Finance:

Penelope Trunk writes counterintuitive but effective career advice for a new generation of workers, where she explains why old advice — like pay your dues, climb the ladder, and don’t have gaps in your resume — is outdated and irrelevant in today’s workplace.

If this is your first time here because you are visiting through the article on authority I have a few requests for you.

  • Say hi! Everyone loves comments, especially me. Tell me a little about yourself. If you want to know more about me I am pretty sneaky and I have information about well me, in the "about" tab at the top – ingenious I KNOW!
  • Pull up a chair and browse around GenPink, stay for a while. You can see the top posts over there on the right or just browse around.
  • If you are a twenty something blogger – join us on our 20something Bloggers Network.
  • and last but certainly not least tell your friends to come visit!

And whether you are a seasoned GenPink reader or a first timer I’d like to know your thoughts on Penelope’s article.

Here’s what I think …

Of the whole article this is my favorite part:

And what is authority but the intelligence and knowledge to ask the best questions? Because no one really has all the answers on subjects like work-life balance and careers. So maybe the people who deserve the most authority are simply those who force us to ask sharper questions.

You can keep talking about old measures of authority, or you can take a cue from these Gen Yers and measure authority by how much someone teaches you about seeing the world in a new and useful way.

I could not agree more that online authority can be achieved by creating thought provoking conversation by asking sharp questions. I am not sure though that this authority carries over to offline life as easily. In fact in my life personally it is my constant questioning that causes me strife. The company I work for is very established and, for lack better words, set in it’s ways. There are many times I ask "wouldn’t it be better if we did something such and such way" only to receive the response "well this is the way it has always been done." I think Gen Yers are known for questioning the norm, this is our strongest and weakest trait. Some people praise us for our innovation and others consider us to be rebellious. It’s all about perception. I think this struggle is part of the reason that many of us twenty somethings choose to blog. Blogging is an outlet for exploring new possibilities and a great way to connect with others just like us.

Penelope mentions that authority is about voice.

Can you tell that a real person is behind the ideas? Do you feel like you know him or her? A strong voice is more engaging, and once you’re engaged with someone you’re more willing to listen to her whether or not you agree. In this way, voice begets authority.

By this definition I would say that yes I do get the title of authority because I do show who the real me is in my writing. I am an authority on what I write about only because I write about what is going on in my life. That is the great thing about blogging, you get to do/say/be whatever you want. Some people blog anonymously, other’s share their deep dark secrets and others are selective. I don’t delve too much into my personal life because my goal with this blog is personal development and helping others get through what is commonly known as the quarterlife crisis.

That’s my long winded way of saying, yay I was mentioned on Yahoo!, thank you Penelope for your sharp questions, and welcome to all of the new visitors.

13 thoughts on “Today’s Voices as told by Penelope Trunk

  1. “In fact in my life personally it is my constant questioning that causes me strife. The company I work for is very established and, for lack better words, set in it’s ways. There are many times I ask “wouldn’t it be better if we did something such and such way” only to receive the response “well this is the way it has always been done.””

    However, people like you who don’t get those questions answered are generally the ones who will strike out and find their own answers eventually, don’t you agree? At this point in your life, possibly you just need the job stability, so you accept that things need to be done as they are, but I’m willing to bet it doesn’t necessarily satisfy you. If you do get to “climb the ladder” in that company at all, eventually you will be the one answering the questions and making decisions, and every question you ask now takes you closer to that point, whether or not your questions are being answered.

    I think it also depends on the industry. The music industry is in the middle of a huge upheaval right now. There are the old “dinosaurs” who refuse to acknowledge the questions of the younger forward thinkers, but for the most part, the questions have to be asked right now, or the entire industry will die. That’s why it’s such an exciting time to be in that industry–there are a million opportunities to ask questions, find answers, and make big change.

  2. Hey Elysa,

    Some great points you’ve mentioned that I can definitely relate to. Transferring any sort of online authority offline has been a difficulty for me as well. From my experience, I have found that in order to ease the transition, rather than trying to convince people of my (or anyone’s) authority, it is much easier (and more beneficial) to help them understand aspects of the internet world.

    As for asking those questions… I definitely hear you on that. It always frustrates me hearing the status quo oriented response. None the less, it’s a quality of Gen Yers that I hope will never die, and quality that AdAge recently mentioned as something that employers are looking for (Trailblazers).

    Cheers on the mention! :)

  3. Wow, Elysa. Mentioned on Yahoo! and performed solo at Carnegie Hall, all before you’re 30. I’m so proud you blessed all of us with your later solo performance while wearing a red helmet. =)

    I’m so proud of you and what you’ve accomplished. The sky is truly the limit to what you can achieve. I believe this is just the beginning for you and we’ll all be hearing more about Elysa in the years to come.

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