Next for Me is proud to be a charter member of the Silicon Valley Longevity Project. Companies benefit from the wisdom, maturity, and knowledge of workers over 50, as well as our greater understanding of customer needs of our growing demographic. But few programs and policies exist to support us.
Our mission is to create age-friendly workplace cultures that attract, retain and develop older employees while maximizing the value of their engagement, experience, and contributions.
Over lunch in Airbnb’s brand new building at their headquarters in San Francisco, our first meeting was facilitated by Desirree Madison-Biggs, Community Support VoC Programs at Airbnb, Chip Conley, founder of the Modern Elder Academy and strategic advisor to Airbnb, and Diane Flynn, co-founder and CEO of Reboot Accel.
Chip (who’s also an advisor to Next for Me) kicked things off with his thoughts about the lack of rituals around “middle-escence”– that midlife transition period after we’ve established our adult career and lifestyle– and he spoke about the unique curiosity and wisdom that modern elders bring to the workplace. Also contributing to the conversation were Elizabeth Shober of Udemy, Maria Febre of Gap, Inc., Tina Mondragon of Reboot Accel, and Lisa Hammitt of Visa.
We touched on the topics of training for older workers, the challenges of women returning to the workforce, and even how the field of Artificial Intelligence may hold new opportunities for older workers due to their experience and capacity for empathy. We also talked about workplace mentoring programs, where mentor and mentee both have lessons to teach. It was a powerful recognition of the potential of the intergenerational workplace, one that honors experience and collaboration.
Ultimately, the goal of the Longevity Project is to create enlightened cultures that understand and unleash the value of an intergenerational workforce. We’re looking forward to identifying new resources and finding new ways to support workers as they mature in the workplace. If you’re interested in learning more, please drop us a line.