The Normative Problem with the Term ‘Next Generation’ Leaders

by Rosetta Thurman, Stanford Social Innovation Review; January 25, 2010.

This piece suggests that the normative problem with the term ‘Next Generation Leaders’ – as applied to young leaders in the nonprofit sector – is that it limits these individuals’ impact today.

The author posits that by waiting until these young leaders have sufficient characteristics to make them “now” leaders, they will have to wait until the Baby Boomers have left their posts. But Baby Boomers are not retiring anytime soon. In fact, many successful Boomers are taking on ‘encore careers’ in the nonprofit sector.

Self described as a Gen-Y career coach and a nonprofit evangelist, Ms. Thurman’s post has provoked discussion among emerging leaders. There was genuine debate about whether these leaders actively eschew this mantle or get about the business of making ‘Next Generation’ inherently more appealing and attractive.

To follow this discussion and find related blogs see: www.rosettathurman.com/2010/03/the-normative-problem-with-the-term-next-generation-leaders/

One Response to The Normative Problem with the Term ‘Next Generation’ Leaders

  1. Interesting

    Would this also apply to the definition – Emerging Leader?

    It does place into my mind the thought that they are not yet current…

    I like to say Emerging and current leaders lol