New Dogs, New Tricks

Photo by Eric Ziegler
I read a quote recently in Harold Jarche's post, "Old dog, new tricks"t .  What caught my eye first was the quote from Euan Semple's blog post, "Old folks and shiny things". Euan states: 
Senior folks have seen technology hucksterism too many times before to fall for hard sell, but equally more and more of them are becoming aware that, partly thanks to the internet, things are changing as never before. They know that they need to get their heads around what is happening – even if they decide that active engagement in it isn’t right for them or their organisations. – Euan Semple
Of course I kept on reading, intrigued on where Harold was going. Harold follows up the quote from Euan with his own example.
After a presentation to the Conference Board of Canada’s HR Executives Forum, a senior VP told me that there was no way some kid was going to advise him on social media. However, he was was willing to listen to me, as I was in my fifties, seemed to understand his situation, and didn’t make him feel uncomfortable. I think there is a great need to teach old dogs new tricks, especially senior managers and executives – my generation.
What I find so interesting is that in some recent experiences, I have found that the 30 and younger crowd is sometimes equally hesitant to use some of the latest tools, especially within the enterprise. In addition, I have found that the 40's and older group is quickly picking up these tools and using them effectively.  
As I encounter these reverse stereotypes, the question that I continue to ask is, no matter who the person is, where they come from, what their position is in the company, and what type of job they do, how do we help them turn the corner to realizing the power of social in the enterprise?

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