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John Tarnoff
A professional development consultant, university educator and former media/entertainment executive, John Tarnoff focuses on personal and professional transformation across generations - reintegrating the Boomer Generation workforce into the rapidly evolving 21st century workplace, and developing programs, opportunities and curriculum to support the next generation of media/entertainment executives and entrepreneurs.

John created the Boomer Reinvention curriculum from the lessons he has learned over a 40-year career devoted to the development and nurturing of creative talent and creative projects in the Media/Entertainment industry.

Inquisitive, creative, unconventional, and an early adopter, John has held eighteen positions over his career, culminating in his current consultancy. He has the distinction of having been fired 39% of the time in his career, a statistic that has, ironically, enabled him (or forced him, depending on your point of view) to figure out the reinvention process.

In the ‘70s and ‘80s, he developed and produced movies for Warner Bros, Columbia, MGM and others, founded a technology startup during the 1990s bubble, and then shifted back into entertainment as Head of Show Development for DreamWorks Animation, where he led the artistic leadership training and university outreach programs.

Since 2009, he has been committed full-time to education and training, serving as a graduate level professor and Head of Industrial Relations for Carnegie Mellon University’s Los Angeles-based Master of Entertainment Industry Management program.

John holds a B.A. magna cum laude from Amherst College, and a M.A. in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica.

Entries by John Tarnoff

6 Ways To Gain Control In The Face Of Uncertainty

(0) Comments | Posted November 10, 2015 | 6:48 AM

Embracing uncertainty can be one of the toughest lessons we boomers must learn. We are all well aware of how our lives and careers have failed to conform to the rosy scenarios we learned as children: that we would work for supportive companies who would provide us with pensions, that...

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Training Boomers For Success In The New Economy

(8) Comments | Posted September 1, 2015 | 7:27 AM

Our generation gets a bad rap for supposedly being behind the times and slow to learn. Experts, however, tell us that nothing can be further from the truth. Here is some advice and reassurance for boomers who may be wondering if the times have indeed passed them by and there's...

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One Boomer's Conscience: Leaving A Legacy

(0) Comments | Posted July 14, 2015 | 4:19 AM

Jim Gehrman doesn't argue the question of global climate change. That's not the issue as far as he's concerned: "It's really not my spot to take one stance or another. All I know is that there's some change going on. You can see it around you every day. I just...

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Avoid Getting Downsized: Become A Better Leader

(0) Comments | Posted June 23, 2015 | 8:27 AM

Boomers face the increasing perception that they are getting long in the tooth, and that younger managers are better prepared to lead project teams going forward. Yet the truth is that over 80 percent of corporate managers are not only ill-suited to their jobs, but their lack of...

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What Is A VUCA World, And What Can Boomers Do About It?

(0) Comments | Posted June 9, 2015 | 3:58 PM

Starting in the early 1990s, in the wake of the breakup of the Soviet Union, military strategists began to track and assess a geopolitical world with vastly different and challenging conditions. They distilled these forces into four central qualities: Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous, and used the acronym "VUCA" to...

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Why Boomers Make The Best Mentors

(1) Comments | Posted June 2, 2015 | 10:01 AM

Being a good mentor not only makes sense from a pay-it-forward point of view, it also makes good business sense. Boomers have all the right ingredients to successfully mentor younger professionals to become successful leaders in their own right. Boomers have what it takes to seed and perpetuate the value...

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Why Is There Still Anti-Boomer Job Discrimination?

(2) Comments | Posted May 19, 2015 | 10:44 AM

Are you a "Digital Native?" In recruiter-speak, according to journalist Vivian Giang, writing in Fortune, the term is no longer just a glib demographic reference to kids who grew up playing video games. It is code for excluding older candidates from applying for jobs deemed so dependent on...

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The 5 Traits Boomers Will Need To Survive The Next 20 Years

(2) Comments | Posted May 12, 2015 | 1:19 PM

In 2035, the youngest boomers will be 71. The oldest among us will be 89. What is it going to be like to look back from that vantage point? Hopefully, most of us will have figured out how to keep working as long as possible -- certainly to 70, when...

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3 Steps Boomers Can Take To Narrow The Employment Gap

(3) Comments | Posted April 28, 2015 | 4:10 PM

Boomers are sending a very clear signal to the new economy: we are not "moving over" any time soon to cede our careers to younger generations. Traditional retirement at 65 is either unaffordable or irrelevant to a generation that either must keep working to survive, and/or wants to keep working...

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Don't Rush Your Reinvention: 3 Tips To Finding The Right Job After 50

(2) Comments | Posted April 15, 2015 | 8:37 AM

When recovering from a career transition later in life, take the time to reflect on who you are and what you want before jumping into a new job or starting a new business or freelance practice.

While we boomers have lots of life experience, and the wisdom culled from making...

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Crowdfunding Myths Boomer Entrepreneurs Should Ignore

(1) Comments | Posted March 31, 2015 | 12:07 PM

Starting a business is a risk at any age, to be sure. But the statistics support the notion that older entrepreneurs are more confident about launching and sustaining businesses than younger entrepreneurs. The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation's annual Entrepreneurial Activity Index report for 2013 reported that 55-64 year olds...

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Passion Without A Paycheck Is No Retirement At All

(1) Comments | Posted March 24, 2015 | 2:23 PM

Last week, CBS News ran a rosy report about retiree Seth Goldstein, a 75-year old inventor and retired engineer driven by a passion to create, who is hailed as "charting a course for the Baby Boomer generation" by reporter Julianna Goldman. To be accurate, Goldstein is...

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The Coming Design Revolution: It's All About Boomers

(2) Comments | Posted March 17, 2015 | 11:25 AM

As the boomer generation continues to age, demographers predict that by 2030, when all the baby boomers will have passed age 65, the over-65 crowd will reach 20 percent of the population. 10,000 of us are turning 65 every DAY. But just because we are getting older doesn't...

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This Boomer's Mission Is Women's Fitness

(1) Comments | Posted March 10, 2015 | 3:24 AM

Encore careers are perfect opportunities for boomers to combine what matters to them with what works for their business, and fulfills their ideal lifestyle. Exercise studio owner Leigh Hometh found both personal and professional transformation through her career reinvention that has provided more meaning and purpose in her life.


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5 Reinvention Steps To Pave The Way For A Rewarding Old Age

(4) Comments | Posted March 3, 2015 | 9:38 AM

Many boomer men and women share the "homeless guy" or "bag lady" fantasy -- that there is no future for us beyond "retirement" age. Coupled with increased longevity, reduced savings and dwindling income, many of us are also caring for our own parents, as well as our grown kids. From...

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How To Get In Touch With Your Inner Hero

(2) Comments | Posted February 24, 2015 | 9:35 AM

As boomers, we started off life as iconoclasts. We were the Woodstock Generation, the Counterculture Generation, the Me Generation. We turned on, tuned in and dropped out. But that didn't last very long. Once the Vietnam War was over, we quieted down and became those people over 30 we weren't...

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Check Out This Boomer's Real Estate Reinvention

(1) Comments | Posted February 17, 2015 | 2:41 PM

After 35 years in the same business, is it possible to turn on a dime and make a go of it in some entirely new field? The answer of course is "yes," but when you've been "downsized" or otherwise unceremoniously dumped by your company, it is still an incredibly unsettling...

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5 Reinvention Steps To Actually Fulfill Your New Fitness Goals

(1) Comments | Posted February 10, 2015 | 4:51 AM

A few friends have sheepishly admitted that their New Year's Resolutions to get back to the gym have derailed, so I thought I would try to apply the 5-step principle of Boomer Reinvention to personal fitness. Maybe it's a methodology that could work for you if you've fallen off the...

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Learn This Boomer's 6 Franchise Business Success Lessons

(0) Comments | Posted February 3, 2015 | 7:15 AM

When commercial pilot Paul Harris finally folded up his wings after decades working for the airline industry, he overcame his fears of starting a small business by acquiring a franchise, and taking advantage of the support and guidance he needed in order to be successful. Pitfalls abound, however, in the...

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You'll Never Guess How This Boomer Is Reinventing Senior Discounts

(0) Comments | Posted January 13, 2015 | 12:18 AM

David Harrison, 66, is turning coupons into causes. He and his wife Cindy have started Boomerang Giving (, a non profit dedicated to supporting our generation in giving back to causes we believe in, using a traditional (and perhaps cliche-ridden) institution to do it: the senior discount.


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