What does the much coveted audience of 18-34 year olds, who just seem to want to change everything about how the world works, really want today? What will they want tomorrow? If change is the constant, how can companies possibly plan for what they will want throughout their lifetime? Technology will always be changing how the world works. But technology won’t ever change the most basic need of humanity: connecting. This generation is reaching out to Grandma, who understands that. They’re talking. She’s listening!
Read these true stories that these inspiring young adults shared – written in their own words. They capture the very essence of what their generation wants, why they seek meaningful work and they give us a hint of what the future that they wish to create could look like. Just look at the level of emotional intelligence they show, everyday, that is so far beyond their stated years. That’s what young adults come with when we hire them or seek to create a product we want them to buy. That’s what we’re missing out on, when we don’t change and they simply move on.
That’s what all the authentic leaders of the world, who worked hard to stay true to themselves, have always done. And this generation is just as authentic!
Connected For Life
Joe Tavares is an intelligent, talented young adult, growing his career at a brand name sports retailer. On his smartphone, and on social media he keeps a picture of his beautiful grandmother. He has her eyes, and her smile. But he went so much further in his inspiring, poetic tribute to their special connection and his gratitude for all she had done for him.He shared, “I got this tattoo in honor of my grandma. She meant the world to me. Everyday when I was a kid I would go to her house in the morning before school and right after school. All of my cousins would be there too. She would feed us and let us play outside. I never understood how big of a staple she was in my life. My cousins, who I consider my best friends, wouldn’t be in my life without her. I describe my grandma as the tree of life.”
He explains, “Our parents are our branches and we are the leaves. Eventually, we fall off and become our own trees and we wouldn’t be able to if we didn’t have a place to grow. I hold my grandma in my arms everyday. That’s why I got the tattoo of her on my arm – to always have her smile at me everyday!”
Grandma The Quarterback
Alice Smith is a 91 years young grandmother, who had already raised 9 children when her grandson Tom Smith came along. As the wife of a champion runner who once tried out for the Olympics, and avid Patriots fan, she’s good counsel for Tom who plays Cornerback for his High School team. He is deservedly proud to be able to help her “trick-out” her Mac so it works the way she would have designed it, if Steve Jobs had just asked her.But the real connecting between these two generations happens during the time they share listening to, and learning from each other. Yes, this High School Cornerback has much to share and, like most of his generation, he is learning about the world from someone who has seen more change than any generation before hers.
Giovanni Stivaletta was inspired everyday by his bodybuilder grandfather. They worked out together, and the conversations covered everything that every young adult asks of too.
One day, his grandfather gave him this handwritten letter. The meaning behind both the message and the medium is profound. An email would not do. Gio keeps it on his smartphone, on Instagram and in his heart with every life choice he makes.
“When I was a little boy a man told me, as I now tell you: Giovanni as you age and get older things may seem hard at times and you think you can’t over come those obstacles but never back down from anything and always keep pushing no matter how hard life seems and always find something that can motivate you to keep fighting every inch of yourself because no one likes a quitter and whether you fail or succeed always stay true to who you are as a man and be humble because in the end you can only say one thing and it’s did you do your best then he looked at me and said I love you kid your a fighter so keep fighting until you can’t fight anymore.”
~ Your Papa, Anthony lascoula
Gio shares with all who ask, “As his grandson I took what he said and I use it as motivation and my grandfather is my motivation. I will fight every inch of myself for him. I love you papa rest easy up there big guy” ~Gio
Yes – Grandmas (and Grandpas) everywhere have got this! They’re listening! They’re guiding this young adult generation who are seeking meaningful work, and a purpose to their lives. They know exactly what this young adult generation wants today, for tomorrow and for the rest of their lifetime. To be connected. To know that, just as Walt Whitman wrote in Leaves of Grass, “Everything’s going to be OK and that you will contribute a verse”.
Jackie Bassett, CEO Sealed Speed, Inc.