Age and Experience Matter

By Larry Robertson, CEO | Industry Perspective

Feb 28

Senior citizens have the right stuff

Remember as little kids, how we marveled at how smart our parents and grandparents were? Well, it appears that we were right. As the AON Invent team looks back at our first 10 years in business, we made a fascinating discovery. And that was that, senior citizens have the right stuff for inventing. Above all else, age and experience matters, and not just a little. On average, a person in their 50s is 6-10 times more likely to invent a commercially viable product, than someone in their 20s or 30s, regardless of the education of either person. And this age-advantage continues to improve as we get older, unless disrupted by a debilitating mental state… and one last fascinating observation: The group with the best overall win-loss score are members of the 80+ crowd. Yes, that is absolutely true.

Note: These observations were made in reference to concepts for “hardline” consumer goods, excluding high-tech products and devices over a nine-year period.

About the Author

Larry is the CEO and co-founder of AON Invent. He has enjoyed a career that has spanned sales, marketing, and product innovation for companies that include subsidiaries of AMR/American Airlines, Learjet and Sam's Club. In 1995 he teamed up with Ron Loveless, the founding CEO of Sam's Club, to launch a marketing and product development firm that grossed $500 million in its first 3 years. Over the past 20+ years, Larry has personally vetted over 1,000 product concepts and marketing strategies.