I heard something the other day which I thought was quite interesting. Before I get into that I will stray for a moment. How important do you think computers and technology are? I think so much revolves around technology nowadays whether an individual is a public or private worker, a student in college or just starting kindergarten, and even for those who are retired or stay-at-home parents. My hope is that affluent people and high level politicians would fall into the same category as well. Technology such as computers is a basic staple in the daily activities of most offices. Of course there have been times in the past where I was more familiar and/or skilled with a system or a program than my supervisor, but never have I seen a Director or those in main leadership positions to be completely and utterly computer illiterate, unable to independently work on computers at a very basic level (i.e. email, Word, or some other basic computer function relevant to their work). It’s okay if you have a supervisor who doesn’t know the intricate details of how you do your job, after all that’s why they hired you and there needs to be something that you’re indispensable and best skilled for. However, to have a leader who has the basic knowledge and ability to understand and use a computer as relevant to the surrounding work environment may alleviate some thoughts of general incompetence at the top. If your boss didn’t dedicate time to have an understanding at this very basic level, what would that say about their commitment for bigger and much more complicated things? Wouldn’t there be some concern as to how they even worked their way up to that level without knowing the basics? Hopefully this sounds strange, although we see something similar when children slip through the cracks and never learn to read. They continue into adulthood and somehow are able to remain illiterate. Now of course reading in some form has always been around and computers have not, but if you have remained in the workplace especially in high level positions throughout this technology era you should have picked up something just as your subordinates and your peers around you have done. How would you feel with having a commander-in-chief in this day and age who may be brilliant, but to-date hasn’t learned the basics of the growing technology in their surrounding environment? Maybe you haven’t noticed but technology is shaping the world and most certainly the federal workplace. We all know that learning something through a book or some other second hand source is no match for the real world hands-on experience. So although this may not be a matter of substantial debate, I found it quite interesting when I heard that someone running for one of the most esteemed positions – the 2009 Presidency of the United States of America - didn’t possess these basic skills. I have spoken to some people who find this to only be a minor concern for what would make an effective President. However, I believe that these kinds of skills are important in a candidate - don’t you?
Marissa Pretto, Treasurer
Young Government Leaders