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#283: Do You Really Understand Other Generations?

Posted By Mark Haas CMC FIMC, Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Updated: Thursday, April 15, 2010
As consultants, we are supposed to be able to quickly assess various business environments, understand cultural and technological trends and, in general, be able to see how others see the world. Intellectually, this may make sense, but can a person really understand fully the perspective of another generation?

Here's a test. Watch any of the following four short videos: Wheter you are a Baby Boomer, Greatest Generation or GenXer, think about how hard it would be to convey the social or personal significance of these events, activities or icons to someone of another generation. You could tell them what it was like but would they really feel it the same way you do when you watched these videos? If you are not one of these generations, show these to someone who is and let them try explain it to you.

In either case, you will begin to appreciate how truly distinct the culture of each generation is at the most basic level. We would do well to remember this the next time we assume we "get" a different culture, age group, or technical discipline.

Tip: As another treat, watch When Life Was Black and White. Send any comments you have to Connector@imcusa.org.

© 2010 Institute of Management Consultants USA

Tags:  business culture  customer understanding  demographics  trends 

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