Jumping the Gap | Generational Business

So what is the generation gap everybody is talking about? It comes down to what technologies have done to our markets. In short international borders are a distance fog, market shares have increased, consumer prices have dropped, and competition has grown. Overall technologies like the internet have made a large impact on the way we consume, and the way we educate ourselves.

I frequently get calls from my parents asking for advice on minor tech issues. Such as email returns, printing jams, buying advice, etc. What it really adds up to is a societal gap. This gap is fueled by the next generation, but primarily driven by the “next/current work force” Generation Y. We now see a much higher degree of home base offices, and small companies that focus on strategic alliances to allow for business growth via the web. The baby boomers and generation X. seem to be lost in what they’ve known in the past not what is present business, which results in these generations having a hard time adapting to change. This is where the generational gap arises.

Let me give you example. In the past jobs have been hunted out by applying directly to companies or organizations. Currently the “proper” practice (fueled by generation Y) is to apply online. Most business have caught onto this theme and now would prefer applications to be made via the net. Yet, I still hear stories of friends and co-workers that have gotten heck for not hitting the pavement and applying direct.

The next step for this generational change is to leave the consumers, whether baby boomers or generation X behind. The gap has been built around age. History has yet to see an older generation adapt fully to the younger generations traits. This is not a good sign for the older generations that are working to catch up. This means that history predicts that this generational gap will widen not shorten.

All in all there are some basic things that could shorten the gaps. The highest on the to-do lists is adaptation. I speak of this not in the sense of individuals rather as a collective. Proper business will teach you that creating a larger network can only help you spread your message. To understand this we must first look at how we can work as a collective.

Predicting the future has never been an easy process but one thing is certain; the internet is here to stay. To bridge the old from the new we must allow for traditional resources to be bartered or passed on in exchange for communication and dialog on the current. This means that we need to create educational networks that allow for things like blogs, and emails to be written with the intentions of knowledge rather then coded dialog (i.e. “My HTML coding is amongst the best the meta tags and keywords really do justice to SEO”). This simple change could result in a shortening generational gap.

Currently there are very few companies targeting this very theory. Why is this? Is it possible that we hold onto comforts as long as possible? Will this be a new market for business to tackle?

Every generation laughs at the old fashions, but follows religiously the new.
Henry David Thoreau

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