The fact that this huge societal change appears to be permanent, affects many aspects of living and working which requires us to adapt. There have been many new products and businesses being developed especially over the last 10 years for older adults. When you ask the entrepreneur, the business owner, and other stakeholders connected with the business or product that is meant to benefit older adults, how they became involved in the business of aging, you frequently hear that there was a unique experience with a loved one such as a parent or a grandparent. The business person then took an experience that came out of love, converted to a passion, and then into a dedicated purpose to make things better for others while providing revenue and various degrees of success.
There is a very significant problem that exists in this model when the business person does not have extensive experience in the field of aging. One unique experience is just one unique experience. It is not necessarily the experience of the larger market. Businesses fail for many reasons but when due diligence is not given a priority before significant investment happens the entrepreneur is looking for disaster.
A significant part of due diligence is education, training, interaction with established business people, and engagement with end users starting at the pre-design phase. Taking the time to understand older adults and the contemporary issues of aging as well as being aware of the unique aspects when functioning in the business of aging will take entrepreneurs and business leaders far in going from the process of concept, to start up, to a successful thriving endeavor.
Voices in Aging (VIA) offers an educational tool about the Business of Aging. This library of videos is designed to benefit those already in business who want to check their understanding concerning issues necessary when working with older adult consumers as well as entrepreneurs, startups, business owners, and employees. The VIA Business of Aging content in videos, handouts, and resources provide a comprehensive look at many areas neglected by businesses.