In the Sixties, women burned their bras. In 2011, Scott Gerber wants young people to burn their resumes.
Gerber, Gen Y entrepreneur and author of Never Get a Real Job (Wiley, 2010) is starting what he calls the "Death to the Resume" movement, which will kick off with a competition in which Gen-Yers send Gerber a video of themselves burning their resume (be careful with matches, kids) and then pitching their new business idea.
Winners will get free coaching with some members of his Young Entrepreneurs Council made up of successful Gen-Y entrepreneurs. Among the Council members that may be judges: Aaron Patzer, founder of Mint.com (acquired by Intuit last year for $170 million); David Hauser, founder of the Grasshopper Group; Nick Friedman of College Hunks Hauling Junk; Matt Mickiewicz, founder of Sitepoint and 99designs.com; Michael Mothner, founder of Wpromote; Jake Nickell, co-founder of Threadless; Neil Patel, founder of KISSmetrics; Ramit Sethi, founder of IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com; Shama Kabani, founder of the Marketing Zen Group; and Dan Schawbel, founder of Millenial Branding.
Gerber sites some sobering statistics as context for his movement:" While the overall unemployment rate in the U.S. was 9.5 percent in June 2010, it was 15.3 percent for those aged 20 to 24. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 51.1% of 16 to 24 year olds were unemployed in July, the highest percentage in the history of record. And according to a recent Pew Research Center study, nearly 40% of 18-29 year olds have been unemployed or underemployed since December 2007."
Given that environment, Gerber is on a mission. "I want to get Gen-Y on the right track so they don't become the lost generation. We're no longer a 'hand-out' society where you work hard, get good grades, graduate college and get a great job. Those days are dead," he said. Gerber plans a rollout of rallies in cities nationwide starting in early 2011 to kick off the movement, bonfires permitting.
So, Gen-Y, keep your bras and other underwear on, fire up that resume, crank the videocam and pitch your business idea. Are you a Gen-Yer who's sick of the Man's system and isn't gonna take it anymore? Leave a comment and tell me what your plan of action is.