Boomers Rule …… In Technology Start-Ups

Good Morning Boomers.

We have all read the stats and heard that the majority of new businesses are being started by older workers.  Now it seems that Boomers have become the leaders in technology start-ups.  Kind of blows up the perception that older workers don’t have the necessary skills for today’s work.  In fact, today’s business start-up rate is lowest for the 20-34 age group and highest in the 55-64 group. 

The rise in entrepreneurship by older innovators grew 36% in 2008 and 80% of all start-ups are owned by those over 40.  There are several reasons for the rise in new businesses among the older crowd.

Many have been pushed out of the jobs market for reasons that we have talked about many times.  Few see the stability that existed two or three years ago and most fear it will not return during their working lives.  With ageism pushing negative perceptions about the effects of age on ability, on stamina, on “fit” within a younger work culture, many older workers face shrinking opportunities from the conventional work place.

Some have decided that it is time to do what they have dreamed of doing.  They finally have the time, and perhaps the means to do so.  Many have easier access to credit than younger dreamers do and often have more of their own funds to throw at their project.

Their families are often raised, lightening the need to bring in a reliable income on a yearly, monthly, or weekly basis.  Perhaps a working spouse provides enough income and other benefits to allow them the opportunity to try something new, to gamble on themselves, to take a risk to secure their futures.

Because the world as we knew it has changed, many will have to continue working well past the “normal” retirement age.  If today’s businesses won’t hire older workers, some will retire early and put the “strain” on social programs that will cause rising taxes that young bloggers, journalists, et al so vehemently rant about at every opportunity.  But many older workers will start new businesses.   If they succeed, if they grow, they will provide new jobs.  

The good news here is that we may actually be on the verge of a really big growth in entrepreneurship.  The bad news is that it is all too often based on the lack of opportunities for older workers in today’s work place.  But let’s  focus on the positive outcomes from our current economic pain.  

If the future economic health of this country is tied to new businesses, more jobs, and innovation, our future looks bright because of the older entrepreneur.  It is not the Baby Boomers who will ruin the country with their “greed” and their “demand for benefits that the country can’t afford.”  Quite the opposite.  It is they who will grow our economy by innovation, by embracing technology, and by taking risks.  They are already doing it and we should support them because the jobs we help save or create may one day be our own.  

You can read an excellent article on this topic at:


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