Generational Sensitivity: You are the Perfect Age

Several years ago, my youngest cousin married. He was at least fifteen years younger than the rest of us. He was also about fifty years younger than his oldest aunt. Over the weekend of the wedding, I was escorting this aunt. Who, by the way, would never be described by anyone as elderly. She had lots of pep in her step!

The night before the wedding there was a wine tasting party. EVERYONE was invited. The bride and groom made sure that EVERYONE knew that they were invited. But our aunt really hesitated. She declared that this was a party for young people. She made it clear, that I did not qualify.

I and other members of the family, who were just as ‘not young’, were looking forward to the party. With my aunt in tow, off we went. It was probably a fun party. We will never know. As soon as the ‘young folk’ began to arrive, my aunt became very uncomfortable and agitated. We left.

And that is when I learned that my aunt had a fear of young people.

My late mother-in-law was just the opposite. In her nineties, she talked about how she hated to be around old people. The old people she was referring to were all ten to fifteen years her junior.

How sad to miss out on a friendship because of age. To pass up the opportunity to share and to learn from one another. Yes, different generations have different experiences. We might use different words, or use the same words different ways. We might listen to different music. That’s no reason not to spend time together.

Let’s consider the phrase, the wisdom of the ages and perhaps allow it to mean, the wisdom that comes from all ages.

In this spirit, I had the good fortune to discuss ‘Generational Sensitivity and Diversity for Project Leaders’ with Cornelius Fichtner of The Project Management Podcast. Check out our discussion right here:

It’s good to be old, or young or in between.
It’s good to have a multi-generational team.


PS. It doesn’t matter whether you are an old soul or young at heart. It just matters that we treat one another with respect.

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