Lancashire MP steps into the future with Kingswood Age Confident

In support of International Older People’s day, Lancashire business consultancy, Kingswood Age Confident, helped Burnley MP, Julie Cooper, to ‘step into the future’ with a walk in the shoes of an older person to help her find out how businesses and the community could become more age friendly.

Kingswood normally helps businesses develop their customer journey and grow success with the UKs fastest growing consumer group – older people. The shifts in the populations age that are occurring across the nation also means we have an ageing marketplace. This offers huge opportunities as well as challenges to all businesses and communities. Kingswood Age Confident enable organisations to take a walk in the footsteps of their older consumers to gain fresh insight into ways to improve the user experience and grow market engagement. Jane Barmer explained “understanding the demographic shifts, needs and desires of older consumers is vital to future growth in any customer facing business. Organisations that connect with their customers and make it easy to access and use services will gain a reputation for excellence and provide great experiences that that will delight people of all ages”.

On Friday 29 September in Burnley, Kingswood was able to use its powerful and versatile Age Confident Experience to aid Mrs Cooper in her new role as an Age Champion MP. Mrs Cooper put on a range of equipment simulating some of the physical effects of ageing and common health conditions in mid and later life. Moving around the venue and the local street the MP felt first hand what it can be like to be an older person seeking to use products and services when vision, hearing, touch, balance and dexterity begin to decline in later life.

Mrs Cooper said: “This gave me the opportunity to simulate old age and it’s made me aware of things I wasn’t aware of before, so heightened my awareness. I thought I could imagine what it is like to be old but I think I had only got half of the story and this has given me a fuller picture”.

Jane Barmer said: “I am delighted we were able to help Mrs Cooper experience the world through the eyes of an older person and help raise awareness about the challenges and the opportunities our rapidly ageing society is creating. Using our ‘ageing equipment’ brought alive unforeseen barriers that create issues and frustrations for people in mid and later life and highlighted ways to aide consumer and community participation”.

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