toucan team

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Youth or Experience?

14th October 2013 by Josh Beadon

The Team

You often see it don't you? Companies promoting themselves on the back of their age or the age of their personnel :

"we're a young and dynamic business, with fresh ideas and a new approach..."
"we're a team of solid and experienced professionals who share 30 years of sector experience..."

This has always struck me as odd.

Surely it's better to have a blend of personnel - a careful mix of fresh young bloods who want to challenge, push, innovate and question, and those more experienced individuals - to offer advice, temper the enthusiasm (just a little bit) and keep the ship steady.

It doesn't matter which business sector you operate in - a blend is always better, and everybody knows that.

And therein lies the challenge. Think of that networking event you've just been to, or the last office party - who did you talk to? the person who works in the same sector as you?  the same department as you? about the same age as you?, shares the same interests as you? -  or did you actively seek out someone completely different to yourself? - if the latter you're a rare breed indeed.

We tend to seek out the company of like-minded people - we are comfortable with that, it's easier, no awkward silences or difficult conversations.

A business needs a little awkwardness occasionally to keep it from stagnation - a challenging or difficult ride is often more thrilling and ultimately more rewarding. So go on, be brave, add some diversity and variety to your business.

And for heaven sakes, stop marketing yourself on how old you think you are - your customers aren't interested in that - they're looking for evidence of that refined, but exciting blend of youth and experience that you've worked so hard to put together.