29 May 2013

Intergenerational Teams A Strength

L’Oreal Canada is picking up on the zeitgeist:

L’Oreal Canada considers inter-generational teams a strength
The company focuses on recruiting new talent and retaining the services of experienced employees, which often results in the creation of inter-generational teams tackling company projects together.

I’ve been promoting this for years.  From Chapter One of my book:

Things have changed, all for the better … However, a strange thing happened during this constructive inclusion of targeted social groups. Each generation of advertisers developed its own versions of yesteryear’s myopia and conceit.

While advertising agencies were never a healthy blend of gender and ethnicity until recently (and many still believe quite correctly that it isn’t quite perfect yet), agencies of the past were usually an effective
mixture of young, middle-aged, and old. Creative directors, copywriters, and graphic artists could be any age. Smart account execs
assigned accounts to creatives based on their age and cultural strengths.

There’s a lot more about it all. Download The Introduction and Chapter One of Advertising to Baby Boomers (PDF).

Posts (2006-2013) about HR issues, Diversity, Creativity:

Human Resources/Brain Power

23 May 2013

Kiplinger Catches Up

The Press Release Parade Marches On.  Today leading the band is a PR firm representing Kiplinger:

Hi Chuck,

Every day, about 8,000 baby-boomers celebrate their 65th birthday. That’s the traditional age for retirement, but the generation that lived through Woodstock, Watergate and 12% mortgage rates has a history of breaking the rules. Kiplinger outlines eight ways baby-boomers are reinventing retirement…

Let’s go through most of these eight ways Baby Boomers are reinventing retirement:

Kiplinger: More career second acts—about 70% of pre-retirees expect to do some work during their retirement years and more than half of those want to launch a new career. Nearly half say “stimulation and satisfaction” are the main reasons they want to work in retirement.

CVRCompFrom my book © 2005, 2007: Contrary to popular myth, Baby Boomers do not believe that they are still teenagers or young adults. (Some probably do, but they need therapy.) Boomers are slyly redefining what it means to be the ages they are. Included in this new definition are some youthful attitudes - but the real change is that instead of winding down, many are winding up. We're not 'looking forward to retirement,' we're looking forward to new lives, new challenges. Only a small percentage will opt for pure retirement. (I predict that in twenty years the word 'retirement' will still be in dictionaries, but followed by the modifier archaic.)

Post from 2007: Time to Retire the 'R' Word

Kiplinger: Rising entrepreneurship—in 2011, individuals ages 55 to 64 accounted for nearly 21% of new entrepreneurs, up from 14.3% in 1996.

From my book: Advertising to Baby Boomers is also for anybody with a marketing or product idea yet to be realized or about to come to market. Venture capitalists take heed: the largest demographic of entrepreneurs are over forty, the largest consumer demographic the same.

Posts from 2003-2013: Entrepreneurs & Baby Boomers

Kiplinger: Helping family financially—despite worries about their own retirement security, boomers are writing checks for family members on both sides of the generational divide. About 52% are providing their children with financial support and 16% are helping their parents or in-laws.

If Wikipedia has a page about this, you know it’s old news: Sandwich Generation

And there’s this: The Daughter Trap by Laurel Kennedy.

Kiplinger: A rise in volunteering—about one-third of adults age 55 and older volunteer their time for various causes. And volunteer organizations are eager to enlist boomers as they have more education than previous retirees and bring skills and life experiences that charities value.

Sounds familiar:

11 February 2008
Me vs. We

22 October 2009
Me vs. We Redux Redux

17 March 2011
The Crystal Ball of Common Sense Returns
Boomers volunteer at the highest rate of any generational group…About 33 percent of all boomers those born between 1946 and 1964 volunteer on a regular basis, the highest rate of any generational group and four percentage points above the national average of 28.8 percent…

Kiplinger: Numerous studies have shown that most boomers want to remain in their homes as long as possible, but often it’s not realistic to stay in a four-bedroom, two-car-garage home. One solution: cohousing, featuring condos clustered around a central courtyard or home improvements that make the house more age-appropriate.

Post from 2007: Neighborhood Design, Universal Design
Cohousing communities aren't cookie-cutter projects. Each is unique. Prospective residents are intimately involved in the planning, though they may rely on an architect and developer to handle the technical aspects of design and construction. Projects usually consist of 20 to 30 households … The latest twist to the nascent trend is cohousing exclusively for people 55 and older.

News article, 2008: Communes for grownups --Co-housing for Boomers a growing trend

And all of these: Aging In Place & Universal Design

Kiplinger: Going back to school—across the US, colleges and universities are designing programs for boomers who want to learn new skills…Community colleges are also reaching out to boomers who want to update their job skills.

imagePost from 2005: Baby Boomers, Adult Communities, and Education

From 2009: Academic Research on Boomers & Lifelong Learning

More from the PR email:

… I look forward to your interest in speaking with a Kiplinger’s editor.

Hmmm.  Maybe a Kiplinger’s editor should’ve spoken to me.  Or to Brent Green or Marti Barletta or Todd Harff or Matt Thornhill.  Eight years ago.

21 May 2013

Tramping Through The Ether

I’m on the hunt, digging around, stuffing my pockets – but can’t unearth that one big blog-worthy story.  Pixels gathered:

Why are baby boomers leading the entrepreneurial movement?
image… Amid economic and social changes, the 55- to 64-year-old age group has had the largest increase in entrepreneurial activity over the last decade.

I’ve heard something about this…

Entrepreneurs & Baby Boomers
All of a sudden every other news article about Baby Boomers is focused on business and entrepreneurs.

17 September 2009
Late Bloomer Boomers
This isn’t like retired people taking on hobbies. The Late Bloomer Boomer Movement is going full blast, and there’s no stopping it. The magic equation: Thirty-odd years of experience plus not feeling old and being relatively healthy plus knowing you have another quarter-century of productivity in you equals . . . Well, we’ll see.

Dick Stroud visits Arjan in't Veld and De Youngsters.  Amazing stuff, a must-click via Google Translate:


Students study baby boomer consumers
imageMarketing and gerontology graduate students are researching ways to reach the baby boomer generation as a consumer group, as part of a project allowing them to apply acquired skills and build upon industry skills.

imagePerhaps the curriculum should include a book recommended as a Classroom Resource by The Advertising Educational Foundation

News Flash:

Baby Boomers Downsizing Homes, Upgrading Options
imageThe baby boomer generation has made it clear they are not ready to retire. For that reason home builders, designers and architects are continuously modifying floor plans to meet their demands.

Hmmm.  Sounds familiar:

Selling Universal Design To Baby Boomers/Aging In Place (PDF) © 2005, 2007

Aging In Place & Universal Design Posts



That’s it.  I’m out of pixels. Unless you want to play some brain games.

14 May 2013

Mature Marketing Association

It’s not all austerity and economic upheaval across the pond.  There are some folks promoting optimistic, practical approaches for sparking business growth:

The Mature Marketing Association
imageWe believe  that Europe's ageing population presents a unique set of marketing challenges and  opportunities which, if addressed correctly, will benefit both business and consumer.

imageInfluencing the formation of MMA was The New Millennium Tales – a collection of boisterous, savvy narratives and essays corralled by Kevin Lavery.  The title is on The Advertising Educational Foundation’s ‘Must Read’ List.

Many marketing/advertising outfits in the U.S. and around the world are MMA International Partners

Bookmark the MMA web site.

Official Launch: June (2013)

06 May 2013

Donna Highfill: Making Incontinence Cool

Over on Huffington, Donna Highfill pens a funny, trenchant piece about advertising/marketing incontinence products:

Making Incontinence Cool
image… Let's face it, if a person in their golden years doubles over in a public place and announces, I'm wetting my pants, most people vacate the area as quickly as possible. If we have wet marks on the back of our pants like that toddler, nobody smiles and says, Aw, bless his heart.

I toss up a comment with a link to a short presentation from 2012: 

I don't need it, but I'll try it on for charity.

Donna Highfill responds.

Make sure to zip through all the comments trailing the article.  Ms. Highfill certainly hits a nerve.

More Huff Posts from Donna Highfill.