What is a generation? Its definition according to Google is ‘all of the people born and living at about the same time, regarded collectively.’ Which means they experienced similar things; therefore, their way of thinking, priorities, lifestyle and characteristics varies. It is important to note that generations can differ among countries and the years of the generation borders might not match. I am going to focus on the Generational model of the USA below.
The very first Generation to be named is the Traditionalist Generation (aka the Silent Gen.). The ones in this category were born around 1900-1945. They lived through hard times, which defines their state of mind pretty much, that is about hard work and saving up. Everything is about respect, honor, order. The goal is stability, but family-orientation can’t be left out either. Since education was just a dream, their entire lives were about grind. In conclusion, they were not really fun, to be honest.
Next up are the Baby Boomers. They were post-war babies, born between 1946-1964, who were promised the “American dream”. To sum it up, they happen to be extremely ambitious, have the will to change the world around them. Different protests were organized back in their days, and they lived through a time of sexual revolution: birth control pill became a thing. Their belief is that anything is possible, they are optimistic and believe in youth, their orientation is rather team-focused than family, they do not trust people over 30, really.
Generation X! They were born from 1965-1980. Their approach to life is a huge contrast to the previous gens, by being skeptical, always asking why and by preferring fun and being “cooler” about everything, still, they work hard but not in hours anymore since they started to focus on increasing the productivity level to do the same amount of work in a less amount of time. They are highly educated as well and are given higher expectations by society because of it.
The Millennials (aka Gen Y) were born between 1981-1995. Well, they were the first generation whose children were busy and had schedules. Education had an expense, though that didn’t stop them from getting higher education than the previous generations and being extremely spiritual at the same time. They see the good, they wanted to change the world, just like the Baby Boomers. They are flexible, fun, sometimes seen lazy.
And now, ladies and gentlemen, Generation Z (aka Zoomers, iGen) is going to be introduced! We are the ones who were born between 1996 and 2012, with smartphones in our hands, which kind of explains why it may be hard being without them. Since every information gets to us quickly, the members of this generation are the most likely to give more attention to social causes. We are really fast consumers, multitaskers with short attention span and are likely to pursue an entrepreneurial path in the future. And we know the rest. ?
So, what about Generation Alpha? In a few years we are going to see what they are going to be and if we notice a generational gap, so let’s see, I guess.
By Timi Vu