Alphabet (formerly Google) executive chairman Eric Schmidt arrived at the company in 2001 in the role of CEO, brought on to “babysit” company co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Glassdoor notes. At the time, Schmidt was in his mid-40s, and Page and Brin were in their late 20s. With 18 years more life and business experience, the baby boomer was able to run the company in a way his brilliant-but-green Gen X counterparts simply weren’t equipped to do. “All these years later, his results speak for themselves.”f
A different perspective
Along with age and experience come different outlooks on ideas. This alternate viewpoint can be valuable in fields considered to be the exclusive domains of younger generations, like digital marketing. “In my line of work, it helps to be incredibly open to how the widest variety of people search for new content and consume it,” says Michael Johnson, director of search marketing for Proformative, a professional development platform for financial pros. “If I’m not pushing myself to be open to other ways of using search, I’m not as effective. I think baby boomers, having seen more change and experienced more types of human experience than a person just a few years into their career, are often more open to the variety of possibilities and not as easily taken in by the web fad du jour.”
A boomer’s credibility can vary slightly in some fields, such as the tech industry, where those in their 30s are over the hill. But when it comes to many industries – think surgery or even real estate – employees that bring 30+ years of experience along with them will usually be taken more seriously by customers than a 20-something-year-old with an MBA fresh out of grad school.