A great article in the Huffington Post by John Tarnoff discusses how we Baby Boomers need to re-frame our current skills and to approach learning new ones with more confidence! Apparently Gamification is a trend in motivating young workers “where you earn badges for hitting milestones and deadlines…[to] facilitate learning and team-based performance.” Though Boomers are typically not gamers and some of us may not feel confident about all the new technology and social media, we do understand competition and collaboration, are fast learners, and have a great deal of mature thinking to offer.
For those of us seeking encore careers or finding a good organization with which to volunteer, if we determine that social media or unfamiliar technology is integral to our success in that organization, we should find community or online classes for training in those areas. If we are generally comfortable with technology, be confident that we can learn the new communication styles and methods. We didn’t get as far as we have in our careers if we didn’t adapt and come up to speed quickly. To promote our book, From Silicon Valley to Swaziland, I had to learn Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Good Reads, and Google Plus as well as regularly update my blog again. But my sales and marketing skills as well as my persistence and drive from days past, held me in good stead to be able to achieve good Media Coverage and Events! In fact, see our most recent coverage in the Cupertino Courier page 8.
According to the Tarnoff article, as importantly, Boomers need to confidently present our assets—experience, knowledge, and skills—in ways that will demonstrate our ability to jump into a new job or career. We will find it fun to mentor the younger generation in the interpersonal, climbing-the-ladder side of business. And they may be willing to mentor us in the new areas we are learning.
Tarnoff ‘s article recommends that life-long learning is now part of what we must constantly practice to stay relevant AND no matter what, we must be our own best advocates. If we don’t toot our own horn at least a bit, no one else will!