THE VALUE OF BOOMER ENTREPRENEURISM
Despite the media attention that may lead to the assumption that most successful entrepreneurs are under age 35, Whitney Johnson’s HBR blog post “Entrepreneurs Get Better with Age” presents an impressive amount of research finding that most successful entrepreneurs are several decades older. Giving several examples – many of them women, Johnson concludes:
“As individuals move into [developmental psychologist} Erikson's seventh developmental stage [around age 40-64] creating something new isn't just a "nice thing to do" — it is a psychological imperative. The urge to create, to generate a life that counts impels people to innovate, even when it's lonely and scary. Data notwithstanding, some of the companies among us will continue to allow these individuals to fall into the arms of independent work, if we don't give them the boot first.”
The statistics and their implications suggest to me that
- There is good reason for Boomers to relish their continually unfolding career/lives making creative contributions.
- There is reason to hope for solutions to issues that matter beyond technology as Boomers will want to tackle them and may be best suited to do so.
- The desire and ability to leave a legacy is a strong motivation.
- Boomers may be more motivated to mentor or help in other ways members of younger generations.
- With less pressure to “keep score” and to please other people rather than themselves at that stage of life, Boomers may actually work harder for what they decide they want to achieve.
What do you think? Please comment.
Phyllis Weiss Haserot www.pdcounsel.com