Ah…if it were only that easy, everyone would be doing it!

I was thinking back this morning to a meeting I had with a Senior Vice President in a (not-to-be-named) publishing company.

This company’s very well known CEO told a group of his organizational leaders that he knew the answer to all their product innovation problems: Hire young people.

Here are some things I know about this company:

  • Perceived as the tortoise (slow, steady, and safe)
  • Risk adverse (just to say it again, clearly)
  • Hierarchically organized in both management structure and communication (everything has the “proper” channel)
  • No flexible work schedules (be in the office, 9-5)
  • Their website doesn’t support Firefox 2.0 (2 not 3)
  • This SVP talked about texting and the iPhone as if they bordered on something mystical
  • Business attire strongly encouraged

In the CEO’s defense, he acknowledged that young people don’t want to work there.

What I don’t think they realize is that anyone that values and strives for product innovation probably doesn’t want to work there either.

Would you?