I don’t want to face facts, but the fact of the matter is my wife and I need to buy a new bed. Our current bed and mattress, I think, are about half as old as I am. I was thinking about this today and figured I may not have to buy another bed in my lifetime, at least for me and my wife. Ok on to the next thing, tonight my wife and I are going to see Jay Leno perform live, at a nearby college campus. On our way to see Jay we drove through another college town. As we passed through town my wife wanted to take time out to do a little shopping which forced me to hang out at Starbuck’s watching the college kids wander in and out while I cabbaged onto their wi-fi.
I have two sons one graduated from college in 2010 and the other one (fingers crossed) will graduate in Spring 2013. Fortunately for me, this allows me to somewhat stay in touch with the college age folks. My wife was telling me that Jay Leno said he tours college campuses so that he can stay in touch with that age group of folks and he feels like it keep him current..
As a nearly “old” HR guy this got me to thinking, you know if you want to stay relevant in this field you had better buddy up to and become good friends with a few folks college age. The relationship needs to be such that you both are getting something out of it. People in HR need to know people of all ages, religions, ethnic backgrounds etc. to see how they see the world. I am pretty sure they don’t see it just like I do.
Besides my kids, I work hard to develop relationships with folks 20 to 30 years my junior. Some of these are on-line, some are at work, my neighbors and in my SHMR chapter. It is important to me to understand how these younger folks think and feel about everything I plan to attend the student SHRM Student Games in a couple of week. In attend I will no doubt learn a little bit about my younger counterparts
And to the youngsters out there this theory works in reverse, make sure you get to know and have in your circle of friends, folks who are of a different demographic than yourself.
- Dave Ryan Director of SM ISC-SHRM