"It never used to be like this", he said.
He then went on to say how he could remember what it used to be like and how it was much better... as well as other self aggrandizing perspectives of an age gone by. To be honest I started to tune him out (which I recognize was rude but I quickly got over it), and then I was reminded of a conversation that took place a number of years ago.
We were into the second year of a large and complicated merger that brought big step changes to the new organization... people, leadership, product offering and go to market strategy to name a few; the growing pains were challenging but we were heading in the right direction. I was talking to a senior leader who was lamenting that everyone was wrestling with the changes, the perceived problems, and how many were suggesting that everything before the merger was wonderful.
"Way back when, everything was great."
To that I said, "Everyone wants to think of it as the Golden Age when everything was perfect. Although, I can remember when there were really bad manufacturing problems, back orders, poorly launched products, and pricing that made it difficult to capture share." I went on to add, "People seem to conveniently forget the bad things and just want to remember the best of times"
To that he said, "I know"
We didn't fault anyone in our observation; it was more a commentary on the human condition and how it is just a byproduct of people managing though change. As I look back on the conversation and the situation (with fond memories I might add), I find myself considering something that had never occurred to me before. If by definition a Golden Age is a nicely edited retrospective of a time that offered peace, prosperity, happiness and where everything you did was at it's pinnacle, isn't is fair to say that creating a Golden Age is just an issue of time.
I mean, given enough time, isn't this very moment part of some Golden Age yet to be defined?
I should point out that "this very moment" I speak of only applies to a moment that is new or different, and not just an iteration of some bygone golden age moment; they need to be moments moving forward, not backwards. Moments building on moments; all colliding into one another until one day you find yourself looking back fondly.
The question that needs to be asked is, "Have you started building your new Golden Age?"