The essence of many 50 plussers was the effects of the sixties and seventies on our psyche, our motivations and our aspirations. However, I couldn’t help but make a parallel with this next phase…the 50 plus phase. The information revolution is to Gen Y what the boomer revolution was to us. A new way of communication. New language, new fashion, new love, mind expansion. Gen Y also has a new language — instant messaging and email. New fashion — gang banger and vintage (that would be the 1980’s vintage, thank you very much). New love –cyberdating, myspace predatation. Mind expansion — information explosion.
But just as my mother isn’t quite sure who Jimi was, we aren’t exactly sure what Gen Y is talking about either. (And if you don’t know about MySpace, then that would emphasize the point!)
When Jimi played, he couldn’t read music, he couldn’t write music…but he could play. With his teeth, behind his back, with waawaa pedals, with his mind. His fingers and the instrument were one.
When our youth is on the computer, their language is cyberspace. Their information is peer-driven. Their community is online. They email rather than read. And we just don’t get it. But they are no different than we were. They are redefining communication for the next generations to come. Just like Hendrix defined music for a generation and opened a whole world of different possibilities.
You cannot be in the job market at 50 plus and stay in the past. And yes, the 80’s are vintage. Dot com is dot done. The millenium is more than a half-decade done in. So if you are not up to speed on all things cyber, then it is time to re-educate yourself. Get on the job boards. Redo your resumes. Investigate what Gen Y’ers are doing to get themselves noticed. And do more. Get out your guitar and play your song. Jimi would nod. Gen Y would say “hey”.