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The Generation Gap and On the Road

Last Thursday I spent a wet and windy morning playing golf with the ladies at my golf club. It was a typical April day in Britain – sunshine to start, a bit windy and some light rain next, followed by a short but severe hailstorm and then back to sunshine.

The format of the competition was one designed to mix up players of different abilities – so each low handicap player was paired with a higher handicap player. For non-golfers that’s basically the so called ‘better’ golfers being paired with the so called ‘not so good’ golfers.

This resulted in me playing with some different people to my usual gang and it made for interesting conversations amongst other things.

One thing that cropped up was the use of technology. One of the ladies in our group is in her 80’s (and yes, still playing golf and doing a fine job of it). She was talking about the frustrations of trying to speak to someone when you need help from service providers and how she uses her iPad and her frustrations with technology. It seems service providers are simply not supporting her in practical ways.

It reminded me of the growing generation gap.

Expectations and needs are different when you’re 80 compared to when you are 20.

It also reminded me of this lovely piece from Douglas Adams in the Salmon of Doubt (part of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series):

I’ve come up with a set of rules that describe our reactions to technologies:

  1. Anything that is in the world when you’re born is normal and ordinary and is just a natural part of the way the world works.

  2. Anything that’s invented between when you’re fifteen and thirty-five is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it.

  3. Anything invented after you’re thirty-five is against the natural order of things.

My reaction when reading this is ‘that’s spot on’ … I embraced and even sought change and new stuff when I was younger. But it gets much harder to do so as we grow older. We have more fear, we don’t have the same energy or vigour and so new stuff can sometimes seem intimidating and often seems to be trying to make our lives more difficult.

And yet are we taking this into consideration in how we set ourselves up to service and support our clients? And indeed, in how we support and look after our staff? How many of us are adapting how we service clients of different generations? How many of us have a strategy for the generations?

It’s food for thought and an area that our What Clients Want research, sponsored by Moneypenny, highlighted quite starkly at the end of last year. And it’s a topic I hope to be addressing in a webinar very soon … watch this space.

In the meantime, this week is a very exciting one for me. Today I am heading up to Ardencote near Warwick for the 2-day LFMC Members Summit. This is when the members get together for some strategic sharing, collaborating and fun. We have a latest trends session packed full of data & research being facilitated by the LFMC Partners, we also have a fun activity(!) and lots of collaborating and strategising. It’s always fun and I always come away with loads of new ideas and very energised.

Then on Wednesday, together with David Gilroy, we are sharing the results from the Conscious Solutions sponsored LFMC Professional Services Marketing Survey 2023.

Please do join us if you are able. You can book your place here.

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