In this recent Harvard Business Review article, Chip Conley introduces the concept of a “Modern Elder” from his experience in joining Airbnb’s E-Suite at 52 working for a CEO 20 years his junior. Hint, they both benefitted from the exchange of experience and distinct points of view.
Boomers and Millennials have a lot to offer, and learn from, each other. Enter the “Modern Elder,” who serves and learns, as both mentor and intern, and relishes being both student and sage. The opportunity for intergenerational learning is especially important to Boomers, as we are likely to live 10 years longer than our parents, yet power in a digital society has moved 10 years younger. This means Boomers could experience 20 additional years of irrelevance and obsolescence. That the number of 65-and-older workers last year was 125% higher than in 2000 presages a national human resource tragedy.
Chip Conley is Strategic Advisor for Hospitality and Leadership at Airbnb and Chief Strategy Officer at Everfest. Previously, Conley founded Joie de Vivre Hospitality at the age of 26, turning it into the second largest boutique hotel brand in the world and running it as CEO for 24 years. He is the author of Peak and Emotional Equations.
Link to the full article: I Joined Airbnb at 52, and Here’s What I Learned About Age, Wisdom, and the Tech Industry
* Photo by: Joshua Ness