Fast food executive complains that social media inflates young people's "self-importance," killing their willingness to work for free

Natalie Brennan is general manager of Muffin Break -- a multinational fast-food franchise business owned by Foodco -- and she's really angry that today's young people will not work for her for free.

Ms Brennan says that a decade ago, she had a glut of desperate young people who would repeatedly call her and beg her to let her work for free (Brennan has been with Foodco for 18 years) while today's applicants are interested in getting paid, and want to know how long they'll have to work at sub-survival wages before they can expect a raise. Some of these young people have had the gall to condition their willingness to work for her on her giving them a higher wage than she initially offered.

Brennan -- who characterizes the unpaid laborers of years gone by as "backing themselves" with "passion and enthusiasm" -- calls this new breed of workers "clueless" and "entitled" with an "inflated view of their self-importance," a phenomenon she attributes to Instagram.

Ms Brennan recalls how, after she went overseas to a conference for two weeks, one of her subordinates demanded a payrise for “looking after the department” while she was gone.

“I said, ‘Actually you didn’t, I wasn’t on leave. You had maybe an extra 10 emails to deal with for two weeks. That was part of your job. If you had solved this problem or saved us money, that’s a thing to bring to me.’”

Muffin Break boss says unpaid work is dead because Insta-obsessed Gen Y have ‘inflated self-importance’ [Frank Chung/News.com.au]