06 Aug

Weekly Wrap Up – 8.6.10

The “Weekly Wrap Up” post is published every Friday and highlights the concluding week’s activities and events through text, images and video. I hope you enjoy and encourage you to subscribe via RSS and/or Email.

Am I the only one who repeatedly makes the same mistakes over and over? I am currently sitting in my hotel room at the Boca Raton Resort & Club cringing in pain from sunburn. I despise getting sunburnt, but I loathe the act of putting on sunblock even more.

It is my grandfather’s 80th birthday, so my immediate family flew down to Boca Raton, FL to celebrate the occasion. Ignoring the fact that my grandfather is not a fan of surprises, the family arranged a surprise birthday dinner at Casa D’Angelos Ristorante. Most surprise parties trick the guest of honor into thinking that the attendees were unable to make the event or will be joining the festivities later. Not the Petri family – we were supposedly “1,500 miles away in New Jersey.” The evening was a success and the food was excellent.

The next morning, I was lucky enough to be introduced to Doug Zeif, the Senior VP of Food & Beverage for LXR Luxury Resorts and Hotels and a family friend. I have been in contact with Doug for months, and it was great to finally meet him and his wife, Jennifer, in person.

I find myself relying heavily on modern technology to stay productive with work. Contrasting the habits of both of my siblings with that of my mother and grandparents brings to light some interesting differences. While it is common sense to assume that younger generations would be more adept with technology, it is interesting to study the heavy reliance on continuous connectivity with one’s network that myself and my peers are addicted too.

Many believe this is because we grew up with the technology. However, my parents and grandparents were also around as this technology improved. For instance, my father works on Wall Street and is now accustomed to using the computer for work and his Blackberry for constant communication via email, texting, phone calls and BBM. However, he is not motivated to participate in such social media tools as Foursquare to earn silly badges.

Generation Y was raised with technology. Our parents brought us up on reward systems. If a child behaved, he or she was rewarded. If a child misbehaved, he or she was not. Previous generations were brought up with less technology, but with similar parenting techniques. Generation Y is now motivated to use geo-location social media tools that offer badges and discounts as rewards. Yet, older generations are not tempted to participate in these programs. They are content using reward systems that date back decades – credit card point systems, frequent flyer miles, etc.

So why, if our parents are motivated by some reward systems, are they not also motivated to subscribe to newer services like Foursquare, Gowalla, Groupon, Peekaboo Mobile, Top Guest, and many others?

Is privacy the main, if not only, reason holding them back? Is keeping their location private more important than earning points, receiving discounts and/or redeeming local promotions? If so, then how do these companies overcome the hesitations of these individuals?