World Cup victory – An insight into the shaping of the new Western World?

This World Cup has been coined as the most entertaining ever, full of near wins for underdog teams, a tournament that’s seen the most goals ever scored in a World Cup tournament and one which has never been discussed so poignantly, due to social networking, so we’ll just take it as read that you know who the winner was.


In the last month The Economist published a series of reports that looked into the social changes that are occurring in today’s world and how they are affecting local and global economies and what’s quite evident is the transformation between youthful and older generations.

So what does the World Cup have to do with it?

The Germans have developed a system under Joachim Low where a very innovative and attacking style of football has been cultivated from a youthful side, but this didn’t happen over night. This has been 5 years in the making.
Low’s side first saw success in 2009 in the European Under-21s in Sweden. Manuel Neuer, Mesut Ozil, Benedikt Howedes, Jerome Boateng, Sami Khedira and Mats Hummels all started in a team that beat England’s U21’s 4-0 in ‘09 and now these players have been adorned with a World Cup medal after playing key roles in the 2014 World Cup campaign.

Germany have the 6th youngest squad out of all 32 competing teams in the 2014 world cup with an average age of approximaely 26 years, and this article explores research that suggests this is an evolution of the workforce. Statista – The Statistics Portal



An evolution that’s been developing from over 2000 years

Young people have never been so focused on receiving a high standard of education to learn, absorb and share knowledge to succeed with life goals than they are today. These are the attributes that many businesses are built on; the ability to collaborate and innovate.

Higher education is more accessible than ever, with approximately 5m Europeans and 3.5m Americans graduating this summer and Universities in emerging countries booming: China adding nearly 30m places within just 20 years. The Economist, Creative Destruction, Jun 2014

The increase in demand has brought with it organisations and institutions looking to monetise the uptake. “American government funding per student fell by 27% between 2007 and 2012, while average tuition fees, rose by 20%. In Britain tuition fees, which were close to zero two decades ago, can reach £9,000 per year now.”

However, some people are becoming disillusioned with the education process as 28% in Britain and 47% in America don’t even complete their courses, which makes their endeavours nearly completely useless – The Economist, Higher Education: Creative destruction, June 2014

The Economist proposes there are three factors that are affecting the conventional process of higher education and professional training to the “big wide world” – Rising Costs, Changing Demand and Disruptive Technology.

A generation of “disenchanted” young people are seeking alternatives, and it’s the first major change since the times of Ancient Greece, where students too gathered at a selected time and place to absorb the wisdom of scholars.

These changes may see greater efforts made by young people to seek training and development within a business (your business), rather than diving straight into higher education.
Ernest Grant are specialists in Lifetime Financial Planning and long term goal setting which is an important attribute young workers will require and it’s a mentality we can help you instil in your culture; it’s not all about the immediate salary.

“It’s not how great you are, it’s how great you want to be” – Paul Arden
The Ageing Economy

A substantial socio-cultural trend is that the modern youth generations are growing up in increasingly older societies. This is particularly so in Germany where the median age is 46 and increasing by approximately three months every year. The Economist, The staid young, July 2014.

We wrote an article on the ageing economy in June, with reference to the Grey Economy actually sapping public funding and finance due to their increasingly long retirement age. In light of that argument is perhaps the most positive thing the modern world can draw from continuously ageing population, is the experience and maturity that young people can absorb from it.

Even if the route through Universities is more expensive and more saturated, young people are determined to find a way to carve themselves into society. The continued development of new technology, breeds a culture of sharing and a more knowledgable youth, which may see more and more young people placing greater emphasis on personal development and long term achievement. Do you have a long term strategy in place?
Are you building your business on young professionals, intrapreneurs and industry disruptors? The world we live in is changing and if we are to learn anything from the Germans, it’s to be organised in anticipating this change, building a team and developing key individuals to play their role for the future.

Our Lifetime Financial Planning and Zenith’s Employee Benefits schemes can help your business do just that – ensure your employees feel appreciated, retain your young team as they train and develop within the business and maybe then they’ll reciprocate with World Beating finishes as 22 year olds.