Salt and pepper, it matters in the new norm

Salt and pepper, it matters in the new norm

Leadership & Management

Debashish Das

Debashish Das

16 May 2020, 13:04 — 6 min read

Paulo Rossi at the age of 40 years won the golden boot by being the highest scorer in FIFA World cup in 1982. Ronaldo at 36 years jumps the highest to score a fabulous goal. The new norm will beg to open the discussion of – “Grey for Growth” and rebuild the disruption.   


While India has the highest youth population, it also has an equally high number of Generation X, PreGenX population that can play a major role in the new norm of rehabilitation.


India with its vision of USD 5 trillion GDP target has the unique advantage of being one of the highest youth population than any other country in the world. What also needs to be realised is the fact that it also has an equally high number of Generation X, PreGenX population who can play a major role now especially post disruption in the new norm of rehabilitation.

Let us consider these points: 


1. Witness to maximum transformation

People born in the 1960s and 1970s have witnessed the maximum changes around them. Landline to pager to mobile; black and white to colour television to Smart TV; landline to pager to mobile; broadband to Wifi; cable TV to DTH; evolution of car, AC, multiplex, homes everything.

Also read: COVID-19 crisis: 3 effective strategies to build resilience

2. Highest ability to adapt and balance

This Generation was born to witness and adapt to constant disruption and change. Hence many in this generation have consciously learnt to adapt well and become experts in managing disruption and change. From baggy pants to denims, from Walkman to itunes, from internet to digital technology and social media in their 40s and 50s. This generation is has taken to adaptation with least effort.

People born in the 1960s & 70s have witnessed the maximum changes. Landline to pager to mobile; black & white to colour TV to Smart TV; landline to pager to mobile; broadband to Wifi... 


3. Balance of aggression and wisdom

Many Gen X have chosen to stay fit over consuming tablets so many in this generation are very fit and active to contribute for 12 to 14 hours of work demand besides having the steady head over the shoulders to think, plan and strategise. This is a very unique combination.

4. Aligned to flexible working arrangements

In the norm employments will be more flexible, may be short term project to project rather than the established norm of hire to retire. The need in the new norm will be to quickly identify the problem, solve the problem and deliver it on the ground at speed. Experience of the salt and pepper will help fast diagnosis of the problem and the fitness and wisdom will ensure speed of delivery. Most salt and pepper generation will be okay to work on flexible work models, short term projects as many would be looking to do meaningful projects. For organisations it serves well since they are interested to give results faster at affordable costs with flexible arrangements. It is a win win.

5. Adventure, what next?

Many salt and pepper folks who have seen success by the time they have reached midlife may want to work for a cause and not always for lots of money. Some of them are well off and have enough savings but want to be part of a good cause which is challenging and answering the adventure and what next itch in them. Most revival projects may be extremely benefitted by such entrepreneurial minded professionals.

Also read: Entrepreneurial mindset to build emotional immunity: Need for the new norm in life & business


6. Stability and tenacity

In case an organisation hires a salt and pepper professional the chances are that the resource will be stable and also last the challenges of rehabilitation and will be very tenacious, will not give up easily. The reason is that they have signed up for the cause not just for the money.

This pool of talent who have seen lots of life yet have lot of life in them, will be extremely useful in this macro economic scenario.


7. Can be great entrepreneurs

Salt and pepper resources can also be great entrepreneurs. For startup scale or greenfield and brown field projects of large corporations where from drawing board to go to market, these resources are extremely useful.

8. Globally exposed

Most of these salt and pepper are widely travelled across the world and are aware of the best practices since they are well read as well. This gives them an advantage to be able to bring best practice experiences and knowledge combined with real life work experience. Such a package is very useful to address business issues during rehabilitation.

In an economy where sapiential and cognitive factors will be much needed than physical labour salt and pepper talent is much more relevant especially post Covid era. As we settle down from the pandemic and plan to revive the businesses, corporations some out of the box thinking to have good talent on board may be needed. This pool of talent who have seen lots of life yet have lot of life in them will be extremely useful in this macro economic scenario.

Also read: It’s time to rediscover self and work towards the best version of you

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Debashish Das

Leadership and Business Growth Coach with over 20 years of experience in coaching and consulting. Specialist in HR, Strategy, Business Growth for SME and Corporates. As a coach...