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AGE DIVERSITY CIRCA 1962

The hit and multi-award-winning TV show "Mad Men" (for Madison Ave.) on AMC had its first episode of its second season on Sunday night (July 27th). A key plot line was that a major client was insisting that the advertising agency hire young people (at the time "people" meant pretty much "men") for an infusion of new ideas.

The mid-level executives (early to mid 30s more or less), were against that, fearing for their jobs. And they and the 36 year old creative director resisted, thinking that 25 year olds had little to bring to the table. But the client ruled. So a pair of 24 and 25 year olds (men) were hired. The one woman junior executive, age 22, was not taken seriously anyway and was ignored as her colleagues bitched as well as when she offered them creative ideas, except by the creative director who promoted her from her position as his secretary.

What did this plot line show us, in addition to the meticulously replicated clothing, grooming, decor and endless smoking and drinking?

*   A big client has clout, and management agreed to what the client demanded.

*   There was a culture of resentment and resistance to anyone not a clone or fitting the conservative mold - even in what is supposed to be a creative field.

*   The changes of the 1960s were coming.

Whether a fan of the show or not, please comment.

Phyllis Weiss Haserot    www.pdcounsel.com

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