November, 2013

I remain committed in this second half of my life to engage in projects with the potential for significant outcomes. When possible, as well, I hope to persuade colleagues of similar age and circumstances to join with me to leverage our contributions to our real potential.

Since, to be relevant, older professionals must remain up-to-date and alert to what’s going on in our communities and in the world, continuing education – lifelong learning – is critical.

My life continues to be enriched by the  and ; also a local group we call Geneva Learners, thanks to a wonderful group of participants!  And, CBEID’s , and   have been especially rewarding as well as challenging.

In addition to continuing education, these organizations provide community and networks through which to act.  Without connections, which often become tenuous in retirement, we can’t achieve much.

But, even with the resources with which I’m blessed, achieving significant outcomes – relevance – isn’t easy in this stage of life.

We hope for significant outcomes with , especially.  Experienced business people are participating in all CBEID programs.  CBEID’s Vision states as much: “CBEID will be a primary source of expertise, support and connections to start and grow new [local] businesses; an organization fostering entrepreneurial collaboration among new and experienced business professionals of all ages…”

More than that, CBEID hopes to be a catalyst to significantly enhance the culture for entrepreneurship in the area (Fox River Valley, Northern Illinois).  For me, this is a decades long commitment, I hope.

Most significant toward achieving real outcomes with CBEID is our work to help create and support the new .  FVEC is currently running competitions with local entrepreneurs pitching their plans to win funding to underwrite marketing, strategic planning, staffing and other custom-tailored consulting services. In less than 12 months, FVEC has facilitated some buy phentermine without prescription high-profile successes – over 30 companies participating, 60+ new hires and $2.2million new financings!  With this kind of results, FVEC will significantly enhance the profile of entrepreneurship – new companies and those with high growth potential – in the area.  FVEC hopes to become a new business learning organization for local people of all ages.

I’ve written about intergenerational competencies that are required if older professionals are to really engage – reengage – in society. Modern society’s expectations of older people are too low. Even our families and local communities seem to tolerate, but not to engage us as real players (equals).  Perhaps older people also fail to address younger people as equals.  Maybe we’re just not enterprising enough!  Anyway, we typically relate in the real world, young and old, from very separate silos.

I am especially interested in older-younger adult relationships, with real world initiatives and outcomes – economic, social and political.  ASPEC and Geneva Learners try to develop such programs.

CBEID and FVEC promise to offer real world opportunities for older and younger professionals to work together in meaningful ways.

My personal entrepreneurial project, the energy-efficient renovation of 405 S First Street, is all about real outcomes. Our objectives were to authentically restore a historic home and to achieve high levels of energy efficiency.  Also, research done by CBEID indicates that building trades are critical to any local economy, so I had further justification for investing in local tradesmen while the real estate market is soft.

The outcomes were a house which will cost only 62% of the energy of a new house built to code of the same size (HERS rating) and it was approved for tax freeze for achieving an authentic level of historical restoration!  A write-up with pictures is in . Our town, , is known for it’s Victorian-style homes and shops.  As these houses come up for renewal, hopefully some of the lessons from “405” will be useful to others.

I would love to hear from others on these issues.  Obviously, I like sharing what I learn, and I also wish to hear from those with different ideas, especially when they disagree with mine!

Sincerely,
Ernest Mahaffey

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