For the Young Masters, There is Need for the Old Ones.

There is every need for all the generations to learn to coexist together. Whereas the young people look at the old ones and label them ‘old school’, there is every need for them to realize that we need them. The older generation might look at the young generation and think of them as ‘pushy’ and over ambitious, yet tomorrow they’ll need them to take over.

For some time now, I have done some research and realized that we, the young people, always look forward to making things happen rapidly. The old and experienced in society have a rather different approach towards the same things. They take their time and let things happen at their own pace. They must have realized that it takes time for one to master even a single field of expertise.

Robert Green in the book Mastery states that it takes ten thousand hours for a person to become an expert in a skill or field of expertise. When interpreted very well, it was discovered that that time translates to about ten working years. So there is every need for us to humble ourselves and be students of life.

At times, when the old hold us back in decision making that we could have loved to see take the shortest time, they are teaching us the need for delayed gratification. Instant gratification is not good especially for the individuals that look forward to becoming successful entrepreneurs. Instant gratification is the tinge that enters inside of us and makes us to start comparing ourselves with others. Like we are always comparing ourselves with the next door neighbor.

At such a time as this, more and more young people are looking for shortcuts to wealth creation. There are rapid changes taking place in the technological sphere. The young are embracing them as quickly as possible as an exit to flashy living. The old approach such changes with caution especially after they had, maybe, been bitten by experience.

In Elon Musk’s biography, Ashlee Vance gives some short and in depth detail of the 2000’s internet boom. The young entrepreneurs of Silicon Valley made lots of cash from successful IPO’s of even companies that had not been formally put up. Investors were investing in ideas because of the internet promise. The only problem is that when it decided to burst, there were more broke young men than ever before as well as investors who had lost their fortunes.

The young need the old as the old need the young too. Photo courtesy of AZ Quotes.

parties with money raised from the IPO’s. We can now understand why we need the experience of the old in our enterprises and lives. They bring in a rich experience to help us as we slowly learn our way through life.

Google’s Sergey Brin and Larry Page brought Erick Schmidt to help them run Google. Apple in their earlier days brought on board experienced people including Mike Markula, John Sculley and many more others. The point here is to show the importance of having senior and experienced individuals to help us run our startups and guide us through life.

In a brainstorming session a few weeks ago, the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) gave a presentation about GEMS (Growth Enterprise Market Segments), a platform that gives startup SME’s an opportunity to list at the NSE and even do successful IPO’s.

Among the requirement needed, the SME’s need to have a third of all directors as independent directors. These are not directly related to the company save for oversight roles. They also need to have a NOMAD (Nominated Market Advisor) who ensures that shareholder’s interests are safeguarded. These are mostly senior and experienced individuals who bring in a rich experience of industry to help in successfully running an enterprise.

So one senior administrator told me that there is need for our enterprises to have the older masters. First they will teach us about the need for delayed gratification. This is important in the sense that it helps in the learning of basic general and financial management. There are complexities in the running of enterprises and organizations that often the millennial generation of entrepreneurs lack.

They also help in the strategic planning and offer organizational advice that is very necessary for young organizations. Since brand development is like a small child, the experience of the old becomes critical in providing a clear road map towards sustainable management of the enterprise’s assets and brand.

Indeed the old generation needs the quick implementation and enterprise of the young people whereas the young people need the huge and rich experience of the old masters to help keep them in check. They will also have all the access to advice and guidelines from the more calculative and risk taking skills of the old masters.

For the better of society at large, there is need to co-exist between the different generations. They could be the baby boomers, the generation X, Y or the millennial. We have not had a clear understanding of the generations Z, alpha and the rest that is coming after them. When we understand their needs, we will be able to learn to co-exist and exploit the synergy they will bring along.

It is a sure point that the young masters need the old ones. The old ones need the young ones too now that we have to learn to coexist and make use of the strengths from each group while working to improve their weaknesses.

#TheOld #TheYoung #Entrepreneurship #MondayMotivation




Geoffrey Ndege

Geoffrey Ndege

Geoffrey Ndege is the Editor and topical contributor for the Daily Focus. He writes in the areas of Science, Politics, Policy, Technology, Current Affairs, Opinion, Agriculture, Energy, Education, Entrepreneurship, Governance, International Emerging Issues, Society, and culture. For featuring, promotions or support write to us at
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Stephen Meki
Stephen Meki
5 years ago

Well done my dear brother. Thank you for a well researched presentation

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