Around the world we Baby Boomers are doing better at being able to make a living - often a good living - than Millennials. Our edge, it turns out, is that we never abandoned the human touch. We push for in-person get-togethers. And when we can't present to prospects, clients, bosses, and boards of directors in person, we pick up the phone. We talk.
In his new book "Promote Yourself: The New Rules for Career Success," Dan Schawbel explains why betting the ranch on social media could mean losing the ranch. Essentially his message for Millennials who came of age with social media is that they have to do a lot more than that. Yes, they have to get offline and interact in person with other human beings. After all, man is a social animal. And researchers such as Marco Iacoboni have documented that we affect each other cell by cell. (A good read on these mirror neurons is "Mirroring People: The New Science of How We Connect With Others.")
Schawbel, himself a Millennial and founder of boutique Millennial Branding, fills in the gaps on what else the plugged-in generation must do to succeed professionally. What never gets hammered enough is the need to listen. Really listen. Not just pretend to. Millennials seemed to have developed the compulsion to always be "on." One senses that when we encounter them online. It's even more palpable when they come to our shops to interview for internships.
Thanks to Schawbel's "Promote Yourself," more Millennials will be attending conferences, participating in panels, and asking for 10 minutes of our time to introduce themselves. All in person. Meanwhile, we have been out here all the while. Now that the recovery is picking up steam our fortunes are improving. In our earning power there could be another Golden Age, the way it had been during the 1990s.
But, we Baby Boomers can improve our game by reading "Promote Yourself" and reflecting on how we can integrate the recommendations into our modus operandi. In a volatile global economy, we are all Millennials. We are all searching for how to differentiate ourselves from our worldwide competition.
Here you can attend a virtual version of the book launch.