I have to thank Bob Watson for sharing this with me on Twitter. I LOVE THIS ARTICLE! Granted, I’m not quite in the age 50+ range just yet (I turn 49 next week), but everything in this article–the video and text is all true.
I’ve been having conversations with several people, especially some female friends, who are about the same age as I am. All fairly accomplished, educated people who have either technical skills or are even tech savvy (or both), and even in our mid-to-late 40s, we’re finding this problem. Companies are not willing to give us a chance, even though we all felt we are extraordinarily good learners and we learn fast– just like the gentleman in the video talks about. We usually have skills that we can easily base our learning on that younger people don’t have, and bring a different perspective to ensure that the tool used is used appropriately and efficiently. We are used to both being with tech and without tech, so we know how to adapt. But we’re not given a chance.
There used to be a time when I was younger that companies were willing to be more flexible in taking on employees. They were at least willing to interview them and get to know them to see if they had the potential to learn the things they couldn’t bring to the job. Many of us older people–and it’s not like we’re anywhere near retirement at this point–have many of those same capabilities and more. Gen X people are truly in a weird position right now. We’re flexible to learn, just like this article talks about, yet we’re not given the chance because we’re “old”, or companies aren’t willing to put out the money, time, and energy to train us to be solid workers for them.
I know Bob was posting this article on Twitter for me to see as his response to my previous posts to the notion that people over 40 CAN be innovative and can learn. I agree!
What do you think? Include your comments below!