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Talking It Over -- How all the generations can unite

At some point in the mid-1970s, a new invention was hitting the market. The microwave oven, which was actually invented several years before, was finally being sold to private citizens and used in homes for daily cooking.

The first microwaves were quite large, slow, expensive, and, in some ways, a bit intimidating.

My husband and I were a newly married couple when we decided to take the plunge and invest in a microwave. Since we had limited counter space for the large appliance, we bought a range that had a regular oven on the botton and a microwave on the top. In those first months and years, we did a lot of cooking with the microwave and it soon became a very important part of our daily routine. I can't imagine not owning one today.

Next week in the Morris Sun Tribune, we will be featuring some articles pertaining to the various generations in a work force. This made me think about microwaves. Now, you may wonder what a microwave might have to do with working among many different generations. The answer is quite simple, they both require adapting to change.

The special pages in the newspaper will feature stories about people from each of four different age groups, how they do their jobs using new technology or, in some cases, the old ways, and what works best for them and their lives.

It is very interesting to see how people embrace technology and incorporate it into their daily routines. I adjusted to the microwave more than 30 years ago and many more new inventions since. In most cases I have found that they soon take on an important role in what I do each day.

Computers and cell phones are two big examples, with these two products mushrooming into much, much more. Sometimes all it takes is one big step toward learning something new and adjusting to the ways of other generations. It may require a big investment, such as in a computer or cell phone. It may also require a lot of time and dedication toward learning. Most importantly, it takes a lot of patience and understanding as we find ways to work together through all generations.