Named for the “baby boom” following the end of World War II, there are now more than 73 million baby boomers across the United States, according to U.S. census data.
Baby Boomers are healthier and more active than previous generations. Roughly 65 percent of Boomers will continue working after 65, making them a significant presence in the office. The “gray wave” is predicted to be the fastest-growing age category in the U.S. and U.K. workforces.
Ninety percent of Boomers are married; most claim traditional values and maintain a strong work ethic. Many take on a dual role of caring for aging parents (the Silent Generation) and supplementing the livelihood of aging children (Generation X and Millennials).
Generally speaking, boomers are the wealthiest of the living generations, and account for 40 percent of the consumer market. This places them in the sales and marketing crosshairs of many industries, including nonprofits seeking support. Understanding how to connect with Boomers is just good business.
Whether as a supervisor, subordinate, colleague, volunteer. or potential client, it helps to know that Boomers appreciate the art of conversation. It’s not that they aren’t tech-savvy; heck, many have developed and launched technology we use today. Boomers simply prefer the advantages of reading body language, hearing inflection and tone or just warming up with a friendly handshake followed by a little small talk before diving into business. Personal connections resonate with Boomers.
Boomers have a high capacity to absorb a lot of information. While younger generations prefer to scan-and-go, Boomers patiently take a deeper dive into topics of interest. Many still get newspapers delivered, subscribe to magazines, and read an annual report or the weekly church newsletter cover-to-cover.
Simply pick up the phone, stop by, or schedule a face-to-face chat (not FaceTime or Facebook). Video chats are is a good alternative during times like the COVID-19 crisis or if geographically separated.
Understanding differences in values and communication style is also covered in DGA’s blog: Communications 101: Know Your Audience. Learn how to maximize the impact of your communications by visiting https://dgacommunications.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.