Focused Consumer & Social Research from Far-sight RESEARCH
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Older people are just younger people touched by time....
Jonathan Barker, Research Director of Far-sight RESEARCH writes:
All these relatives of mine were young when this picture was taken around 1910. I've recently had my 55th birthday and people keep using the word old: my children make dinosaur jokes. My mother is concerned that she has such an old son, though she continues to bound around in her eighties. I celebrated my 50th birthday dancing with my mum and my daughters ad my 51st by going to a play in which my then 21 year-old daughter starred. More recent birthdays have been celebrated with them at concerts featuring works by long-dead composers. One was conducted by a 28 year old; another, no less vigorously conducted by an octogenarian, featured works by a composer who is barely 30. My partner was recently appointed to the most responsible job in her life - a year under the retirement age for women.
The above photo includes my grand-father, also then 21. Two of his sisters had already died. Of the rest, some lived only another 20 or 30 years. Others lived into their 80s and 90s. This is the only known adult photo of my grand-father (aged 21) with hair atop his head: even my grand-mother, whom he married in 1919, said she never remembered him with hair. He's in the back row under the window with his father (b 1858) on his left – with his parents and then-surviving siblings.
These people were linked by genetics and many common experiences. But their views, perceptions and experiences of life differed hugely. Imagine what a variety of viewpoints and life histories could be found, even just among those now living in Britain, among all those people aged 50+, with more than 50 years and every kind of ethnic, health, geographical, linguistic, class, gender, experience and personal characteristic to differentiate them..... if only they were asked!
Yet so many (younger) people managing or marketing goods and services treat all these people almost as if they were part of one or maybe two "groups". They might be classified as "over 50", "65+" or, maybe, "very old" (i.e. over 75 or 80). Is this good enough? The differences (e.g. of attitude, experience, wealth or health) surely exceed the similarities.
Older people often have long sight and long memories. They can see the wood for the trees. We call that FAR-SIGHT. So why not ask them what they think and what they want? Why not ask us to ask them?
...and talking of wood and trees, we have other areas of special focus and expertise. One of these involves exploring issues of importance in Britain's countryside and to people concerned about RURAL LIFE. Others are listed on the left. Do contact us if you share these interests or would like to learn more about what we may be able to offer you.
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