The baby boomers generation - born 1946 to 1964 - have transformed the world as they have gone through their lives.
More babies were born in the twenty years following world war two than in any previous time.
This ‘baby boom’ not only changed the demographics of the population, it created enormous wealth and prosperity in various markets as they have aged.
Of course generational ‘descriptions’ like these are somewhat artificial.
But what isn’t artificial is the massive booms that occurred in childcare and baby food in the 40’s and 50’s. The massive boom in education and music industries in the 50’s and 60’s. The huge boom in cars and housing industries in the 60’s and 70’s.
And now, the huge boom in mature age and senior market segments like superannuation, aged care, and lifestyle industries.
The younger of the baby boomers and older of that next generational artifice - the Gen X
have transformed industries due to the size and economic productivity of these groups.
The mature age segment has been proven to be one of the most productive generations ever. They have proven to be one of the biggest consumer groups. They have been proven to be amongst the best in terms of business ownership prowess.
And yet, despite their massive influence on wealth and prosperity of corporations around the world, this group is now getting the cold shoulder when it comes to respect, help and support.
Mature individuals report overt ageism at 27%
If they lose their job, it takes twice as long to find a new one.
They are accused of being inflexible, expensive to employ and technologically illiterate.
And yet, they remain amongst the most productive, and effective generations in our population.
Using their experience and wisdom to make a positive impact wherever they choose to invest time and energy.
In the 1970’s a dystopian view of the future was presented in a series of science fiction movies including Logan’s run where limited resources had led to people being terminated at the age of 30. In Soylent Green limited resources meant some humans were being ground up for food.
And yet science fiction is not the only place where older and less useful populations are being targeted with insane, dark solutions.
A recent Royal Commission found that aged people are being pumped full of drugs in homes in order to keep them quiet and of ‘no trouble’ to the staff.
Another found financial planners doing nothing in return for stripping wealth from clients - with the mature and senior age groups most at risk.
The aforementioned ageism and extended times to find work show another corporate and recruitment company driven program to discriminate against the experienced and mature amongst us.
We’re being told to work longer, with retirement ages creeping up. And yet, we won’t provide opportunities for this age group to work because we want want cheap, young and vibrant work cultures.
It will backfire.
Already governments are panicking about the lower number of taxpayers, that there won’t be any social purse available to support older citizens.
Already we have too many people taking and too few giving in the nett contribution to our stable and civil society.
Women in this age group are even worse off.
They retire with less superannuation. They are underrepresented in senior and board positions that might help them prepare for retirement.
They are more likely to be homeless and destitute in mature and senior years.
And yet they are proven to be more productive and better business owners than their male counterparts.
Australia rates 67th out of 96 countries in this age group on measures of financial security.
We can ill afford for an entire generation(or two) of the baby boomers and generation X to be sidelined.
We need their wisdom, we need their experience, we need their productivity.
Ignoring them, benching them, reducing their status to zero will bring a CRASH to the BOOM.
Supporting them, engaging them, using their wisdom and experience will support continued prosperity, a continued stable, civil society that allows every one to be useful and no one to be ignored.
A generation that created wealth and prosperity for many, now needs to be embraced by all.
I for one, don't plan on letting this happen. What about you?