Sunday, 22 April 2012


We 'boomers' have much for which we must apologize.  Too often our leadership has taken on the attitude of entitlement instead of thankfulness.  Where did we go wrong?

I am an early baby boomer, having entered the workplace in the mid '70's.  The leaders of my day had gone through vastly different life experiences. 

If they were in middle and senior positions of responsibility, that meant that most would have lived through the Great Depression and WWII. As a result they were thankful to have a job and even more thankful to be alive. 

They may not have been the most inspirational leaders, but there was a decency about them.  They recognized the value of a day's work.  A handshake was a commitment that was honour bound.

But we boomers have lived, by and large, through a period of relative prosperity and peace.  And somewhere along the line, we stopped being thankful.  Things were so good for so long, we developed an attitude of entitlement. This is not to say that there have not been challenges or that the ride has not been bumpy from time to time.  But on balance, we have had it pretty damn good.

And yet our legacy will not be one of which we can be proud.  We have allowed our political leaders to borrow from future generations to pay for our excesses today.  We have allowed our business leaders to create an economic system that has the greatest disparities in history between the rich and the poor. And we are poised to leave the workplace with the most recent history being the Great Recession.

It seems to me that we have much to account for...and little defence to protect us.

We had a chance to inspire.  So far we have missed the boat.

But perhaps it is not too late.  Perhaps we can make a difference.  Perhaps we can provide the inspirational leadership that is more necessary today than ever before.

Join me next time as we continue this dialogue.


1 comment:

  1. I think your comments are accurate, Jim. I think as a boomer myself that we have rationalized our "need for more" as a way of providing for our children when perhaps the best example we should have been trying to set is one of living with what we need rather than what we want. The sad irony is that it is theirs and subsequent generations who will bear the consequences of our poor decisions and examples whether it be with respect to our indifference to environmental issues or economic policies that favour those who already have more than they need.