Chip Conley is a NY Times bestselling author, founder of Joie de Vivre Hospitality, and the Strategic Advisor for Hospitality and Leadership at Airbnb. His newest book, “Wisdom@Work: The Making of a Modern Elder,” was inspired by his post-50-year-old experiences as both a mentor and unexpected intern at Airbnb.
At age 26, he bought an inner city hotel, renamed it The Phoenix and it is now a popular place to stay for musicians, celebrities, etc. in the Bay area. After that he became the founder of Joie de Vivre Hospitality (JDV) which has become the 2nd largest boutique hotel brand in America, with 3500 employees.
Chip sold JDV in 2010. He accepted an invitation in 2013 from the founders of Airbnb to help transform their start-up into what is today the world’s largest hospitality brand. In January 2018, he founded Modern Elder Academy (MEA), the world’s first “midlife wisdom school,” where attendees learn how to repurpose a lifetime of experience for the modern workplace.
Chip has made observations of 5 criteria that a modern elder may display. They are:
2. Emotional intelligence
3. Holistic thinking
4. Unvarnished insight
5. Good judgment
How does one start to become a modern elder?
1. Evolving – if you are attached to your current identity you may need to evolve it, fix your ego, perhaps. Have a growth mindset, be curious, and try to improve yourself. Chip says, “Curiosity is the elixir for life”
2. Learning – don’t be afraid to ask questions and be ‘catalytically curious’
3. Collaborate – with age you develop pattern recognition. Wisdom is seeing patterns. Being intuitive about people makes you a great team member, helping people to see that diverse teams are more successful – this includes diverse in ages
Chip’s advice for younger workers is to look around them to find people they see as a role model. Look at the people who you most admire and ask them out for coffee.
His advice for older workers is to take a hard look at your current position. Is the habitat suitable for someone like you? If you feel you are irrelevant then move. If it feels good, look at how you can share your wisdom.
He also tells older workers to intern publically and be curious. When you have advice, ask if the person would like some advice and come from a place of humility. It is important that the person you are trying to mentor has a growth mindset.
Chip suggests that organizations start by reading the book, as the book has 10 specific steps for companies. Organizations should look at how they can adapt their aging workforce and they should look at best practices from other organizations in order to create multigenerational groups.
What You Will Learn In This Episode:
● 4 steps to being relevant in mid-life
● How organizations can be stronger by embracing a diverse range of ages
● How to find a mentor
● Why it is good to be ‘catalytically curious’
● Why midlife is now 35 – 75 years old
● A look at a typical day in the life of Chip
● How to get rid of your ego
Link from the episode: