Every two years, Encore.org gathers encore leaders from around the US and beyond to share and learn from each other. What brings them together is their common interest in growing the movement to engage people over 50 to address social needs. For two days this November, 200 leaders tackled issues and discussed new ideas. Here are 3 takeaways from that event. (If you’re interested in a more complete summary, send us a note.)
Words matter – How we reach out to people, what we say about opportunities to engage and whether we connect emotionally make a big difference in how people respond. What works for other groups may not resonate with people over 50. Testing and revising messages until they fit can make the difference between success and failure.
A multigenerational approach – People over 50 now include 3 generations and that broad an age range may require multiple approaches. In addition, getting younger people involved builds connections and support that are essential to creating teams that can learn from each other and better reflect the communities we serve.
New power – Old models of engagement rely on top-down approaches while new power bubbles up from the grass roots. Finding ways to encourage bottom-up activity allows organizations to harness new energy and ideas. It also helps build awareness and support for your mission. Read the Harvard Business Review article “Understanding New Power” or get the book New Power by Jeremy Heimans and Henry Timms.