In our recent Transform Virtual Conversation, we had the pleasure of hosting Chip Conley, Founder and CEO of Modern Elder Academy. The conversation, led by Transform Co-Founder and GM, Samara Jaffe, delved deep into the essence of midlife – a period often shrouded in misconceptions yet ripe with opportunities for profound personal and professional growth.
Chip opened up about his journey from founding a successful boutique hotel company to his transformative role at Airbnb. This transition in his career path, aligned with his personal encounters with life’s unpredictability, including a cancer diagnosis, shaped his insights on midlife and its potential for reinvention and growth.
The discussion highlighted an enlightening demographic revealed by the 2020 U.S. Census: over a third of Americans are between the ages of 40 and 65. Chip emphasized the importance of embracing this phase as a chrysalis – a time for metamorphosis and rebirth, rather than a crisis to be endured.
Key insights from the conversation included the concept of ‘mutual mentorship’ in the workplace, where learning and mentorship go hand in hand across generations. Chip shared his experiences and learnings from Airbnb, where he observed a blend of wisdom and digital intelligence across different age groups, enriching the company culture and driving innovation.
Furthermore, Chip spoke about his upcoming book, “Learning to Love Midlife,” which serves as a practical guide to navigating midlife transitions. The book, structured into 12 compelling chapters, promises to be a beacon for those during their midlife journey.
As we wrapped up the session, Chip left us with a powerful message: midlife is not just an age bracket; it’s an opportunity for rediscovery and transformation. He urged leaders to cultivate age-diverse, fluid workplaces, recognizing the unique contributions and perspectives of every age group.