To those of you born between 1980 and 1994:

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I apologize if this sounds harsh. In the recent past we somehow managed to hire a barn full of princesses: it was a nightmare we want to avoid!

This year (2014) we had the most fantastic staff we could have ever hoped for, an incredible combination of truly awesome people who made this summer exciting, fun, exhausting and an all around pleasure. It is our goal to try to always hire people of the same caliber.

Unfortunately, a number of you are simply not prepared to function in the adult work world. We understand that each of us is what and who we were taught to be. If this is your first or second full time job, you may have some painful learning experiences.

The following facts are sobering:

American Express and the consulting firm Millennial Branding: survey shows

  • 47% of supervisors feel Gen-Y employees have a poor work ethic
  • 46% say this generation of employees are easily distracted.

Jean Twenge, the author of the 2006 book Generation Me, considers Millennials to be what she calls “Generation Me”. Twenge attributes

  • a sense of entitlement based on personality surveys that showed
  • increasing narcissism among Millennials compared to preceding generations when they were teens and in their twenties.

In 2008 author Ron Alsop called Miollennials “Trophy Kids,” a term that reflects the trend in competitive sports, as well as many other aspects of life, where

  • mere participation is frequently enough for a reward.
  • It has been reported that this is an issue in corporate environments.

A book written about Generation Y authored by Bruce Tulgan is titled “Not Everyone Gets a Trophy” says: Keep in mind that

  • this generation was raised by a set of parents that focused on building dear son or daughter’s self esteem.
  • “Don’t you settle for anything less than what you deserve – because you are special” was the mantra of our parenting.

If you were born between 1980 and 1994, ask yourself if any of the below characteristics describe you. Then ask yourself if you are capable of quickly overcoming these issues (before you arrive):

  • a poor work ethic,
  • easily distracted,sense of entitlement and narcissism
  • fragile self esteem requiring frequent “trophies, ribbons, or awards”
  • don’t want to work as many hours as previous generations
  • blurred lines between work and personal lives
  • lives are device-driven
  • find it’s exhausting having to talk to people face-to-face, to make eye contact and speak in complete sentences

Please be aware that:

  • there is no texting on the ranch
  • cell phones are not used on the ranch publicly
  • all positions require strong face-to-face skills
  • we work long hours
  • management does not provide intense continuous supervision to assure that staff stay on task
  • if you show up here without the credentials need to work (eg. I-9 documents, wrangler first aide/CPR) then you do not need to get out of your car. Go get the needed credentials and come back when you are ready to work.
  • Hint: if you expect mom or dad to look up I-9 credentials for you, then you will not be happy here.
  • management does not provide “trophies, ribbons, or awards.” Our focus is on guest delight, not staff self esteem. We are here for our guests.

Without sounding too harsh:

  • Your employment relationship will end if your parents tell the owners or managers to “take good care of you” – this is just not our business and out of the scope of our skills.
  • If you did not shop for and buy your own clothing and gear, that is, if your mother bought your clothing and gear, you may not be prepared to function as an adult without your mother hovering over you. We do not have mother housing available here.
  • Take a very long hard look at your Facebook page – this is your most public face, the first thing that employers, admissions officers and customers study. Do you present yourself as a capable, mature adult, or as a silly adolescent?
  • If you arrive without documentation you need for employment (listed elsewhere) then you do not need to unpack. We will give you a free ride to the bus station and wish you well. 
  • We will not discuss your performance or your  emotional needs with your parents.
  • We can no longer provide the coaching and supervision that some “barn princesses” (and princes) require to grow into adult competence. Your employment relationship depends on your ability  to do the work expected.
  • We provide you with an honest dollar in exchange for an honest day’s work. No awards, trophies, certificates or ribbons.
  • All positions start with a probationary period.
  • “Snarkiness” is not considered cute or endearing.
  • You will be expected to keep your smart phone off and put away. The use of cell phones and “texting” is not allowed in public areas of the ranch. Can you function without a cell?
  • Your emotional needs cannot interfere with our ability to delight our guests.
  • If your parents told you that you were special, and you believed them, then you have some very painful lessons ahead. We would prefer that you learn these lessons elsewhere.

If this message upsets you or makes you feel “insulted” or “dis-respected,” then consider very carefully whether this workplace is a good fit for your emotional needs.