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It takes a village to run Enterprise 2.0

We're getting old. Sighhhhhh.

That's probably one of the last things you want to be reminded of, but recently I got to thinking about how our aging workforce can be used to our advantage as we work to deploy Enterprise 2.0.

I was reading this ZDNet article by Oliver Marks, in which he talks about how we can use technology to foster family cohesion and and help keep the elderly productive.

"Given that modern families, like modern business, are increasingly distributed, we can look at the innovation from companies like Apple and Cisco in a new light as enablers to the new (older) generation," he writes.

But rather than continuing to focus on the us vs. them generational divide debate, why not capitalize on our generational strengths, instead of using them against one other?

Gen Y is considered the Internet Generation or Facebook Generation, characterized by its "natural-born" expertise in digital technologies, media, and communication. Gen Yers are known for their inventiveness and propensity to rewrite the rules.

Gen X, truth be told, is a heterogeneous bunch. It's considered the PC Generation, living through the Dot-com bubble's growth and subsequent burst. Some also characterize Gen Xers as a generation that rejects rules, is practical, and multitasks well.

And baby boomers are known for their rejection of the institution and bringing about major social change. They're marked by their independent thinking and worldly views.

So what if we let Gen Y focus on the latest technology, Gen X on networking, and boomers on imparting a lifetime of knowledge and experience?

One group is not better equipped to lead or execute a business plan than the next. But given the opportunity to collaborate, each generation can educate and mentor others, resulting in a cross-pollination of ideas, experience, and knowledge.

It takes a village to run a successful business. A rainbow of skills, expertise, talent, from a range of ages. The same holds true for E2.0. A successful E2.0 strategy can thrive with cross-generational collaboration.

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