A 15 yo consultant wrote a white paper about teenagers. And so what ?

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The case made much noise last week. A  15 years old consultant at Morgan Stanley produced a white paper on how young people of his generation uses medias. And all the world to swoon over the document, to such an extent it was propelled on the front page of the Financial Times website. I hastened to read this report that was supposed to change the face of the world.

I let you read them before we dig a little.

Media&Internet How Teenagers Consume Media

A few quick conclusions:

– We learned nothing more than what has been endlessy repeated for the lastt two years. Hardly surprising since the figures are those we already now, since no studies having been conducted specifically for the occasion.

– A 15 yo trainee , speaks to us about those of his age. In the end the interest of the thing is that for once this generation  is not described by adults who would try to deliver  their own messages but by one of its members.

– Apart from that …

I forgot an important point. Because it comes from Morgan Stanley, and with the noise around, classical companies should be more comfortable with this document than if it came from the usual breakthrough evangelists.  But they won’t learn anything new.

But :

– What was the objective of Morgan Stanley? Do not tell me they had nothing on the subject before. Is it to understand its future customers (marketing oriented) or future employees ( internal HR)? Or just to keep an intern busy?

– I can understand that Morgan Stanley is so proud of the work of trainee they share and spread it up hill and down dale. But rather than read the report I think the real question, the real contribution, would to answer this question: what lessons did they draw, what  they will do after ? I do not think anyone is still interested in knowing that new generations are different. What businesses expect to know is how their peers are relying on this observation to build their organization and practices for tomorrow. And what I miss in the report is a “so what”‘ conclusion. But maybe they don’t care about drawing conclusions for their business at all, maybe it was not the purpose.

The age of the consultant is not relevant either since everyone has been knowing these informations for a long time. Any 15 yo kid would have been able to copy/paste numbers and facts. Unless the only goal is to make the marketing of Morgan Stanly on the back of a study and a trainee that are  pretexts.

If I had to give them a piece of advice, it would be  : stop making buzz about reports that bring nothing new and start listenin to you customers, their children, and your own children. And act.

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Bertrand DUPERRINhttps://www.duperrin.com/english
Head of Employee and Client Experience @Emakina / Former consulting director / Crossroads of people, business and technology / Speaker / Compulsive traveler
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