We are celebrating our nation’s birthday this coming weekend, and it offers us a chance to reminisce about the fireworks of our youth. And it also gives us a great opportunity to think about the differences between the generations that came before us, our generation, and those that came later, and the challenges of understanding each other.
1925-1945 The Silent Generation.
[Coined by Time Magazine in 1951.]
Traditionalists. Children of this era were expected to be seen but not heard.
Traits: Loyal, determined, respectful, thrifty.
Rock & Roll Generation/Generation Jones. High birth rates followed WW II, eventually to be stopped by The Pill.
Traits: Ambitious, goal-oriented, and competitive, Focused and believe in more hours at work, careless about wealth, Resourceful and team players, Bureaucratic.
1965-1980 Generation X/Baby Bust.
Known as the last generation to hold dear to its culture, education and understanding the world before technology became the norm. The last Americans schooled in the old manner, who know how to fold a newspaper, take a joke, and listen to a dirty story without losing their minds.
Traits: Work hard, believe in work-life balance, independent-minded, flexible and direct, self-reliant, Thinkers who embrace feedback, Often in debt, sometimes cynical.
1980-2000 Generation Y/Millennials.
Born to parents of Baby Boomers, named to harness the start of the new millennium. Start of Technology taking shape. More ethnically and racially diverse.
Traits: Socially driven, ethnically diverse, tech-driven and curious, Educated and multi-career based, financially conscious and therefore stable, poor at interpersonal skills, less religious.
1996-2009 Generation Z / Homeland Generation, children of Gen X.
Sense of hope to avoid past mistakes by earlier generations (Tech/Internet), learn to drive late, sexually active later in life. Spend most of the time planning for their future. The huge amount of information at their disposal affects their sense of concentration (Always multi-tasking = short attention spans). Goal oriented and pragmatic.
Traits: Tech-savvy and ‘always on. Poor at interpersonal skills, reduced attention span. Indoor generation, ethnically diverse, socially driven, less religious.
2010-2025 Generation Alpha.
1st iPad in 2010. Most transformative generation ever, experiencing first-hand the most transformative trends in technology. The speed of advancement, AI and lastly, the outbreak of C-19 will impact their lives.
Traits: Tech savvy, indoor generation.
Where we are now
The Greatest Generation is nearly all gone, and those from the Silent Generation have mostly passed on as well, but their legacy lives on in the psyches of their children and grandchildren. How many of us remember stories from their parents or grandparents about walking 6 miles in the snow to save a nickel on bus fare?
And how many Baby Boomers and Generation Z’ers feel like they’re on the same planet when they have to work collaboratively on something? Understanding each other is one of the most difficult challenges we face, but one of the most important for us to conquer.
Stay Safe, and be the Best!
Blaise Group NY, LLC