“Hope I die before I get old” sang rock band The Who, in their 1965 hit ‘My Generation’.
Today, that same generation are still at the helm of many a business and the world of finance, tax and accountancy rank amongst one of the most likely to have a soon-to-be retiree at the top.
The baby boomer generation, who put The Who at the top of the charts, may still have their hands firmly on the steering wheel of the world’s financial institutions and accountancy firms– but for how much longer.
There is a growing disconnect in a lot of medium sized and smaller accountancy firms, about the direction in which they are being steered and a divide, which has opened up between the older, more senior members and their newer, younger counterparts.
Hands up if you are aged under thirty five and have not felt frustrated by a senior staff member, who was approaching retirement, because of their refusal to do something new or in a different way.
Are you a generation Y or millennial who has experienced being marginalized or not listened to by your M.D. or C.E.O. Have you tried to bring social media and other new ideas into your company’s meetings, only to have them either shot down in flames or simply ignored?
Likewise, are you an older staff member or perhaps business owner who wishes to capitalize upon what already works and is quite happy with those streams of revenue, without going looking for others – especially if they sound either risky or just plain baffling?
If, in other words, ‘if it ain’t broke then don’t try to fix it’ is your mantra, then you are not alone for CEOs and managing directors of your age bracket and that it is frustrating the hell out of your younger colleagues!
The chances are that soon you will be retiring and leaving the business to either an existing partner or family member who is younger.
At the moment, you don’t see any need to change your strategies and approaches to the business. Your clients know that you do a good job and come back to you time and again. Perhaps you don’t appreciate just what social media advertising and exposure can do for your business.
The fact is, sooner or later, you will be handing over the reins of your business to someone new. Maybe this is the time for a dialog between you and your younger colleagues and to start implementing a few of these changes, whilst you are still at the helm and actually see the way it could help you and your business.
At the very least, just start having a conversation about it – there’s nothing to lose and you may be glad you did!