- CIVIC – 1901-1924, The GI or Hero Generation
- ADAPTIVE – 1925-1924, Silent Generation
- IDEALIST – 1943-1960, Baby Boomers
- REACTIVE – 1961-1983,
- Generation XCIVIC – 1982-2002 (?),
- Millennial Generation
One very interesting statement was that ‘The generation before wants them to act like their generation, when in fact the next generation reacts to the generation before them’. I found this a very interesting statement, and one that I came to understand through the discussion. The Baby Boomers (1943-1964) were described as optimistic, team orientated, focused on personal gratification / health and wellness, personal growth, youth, work and involvement. The defining events were JKF’s assassination, the Vietnam War, Watergate, broadcast TV, civil and women’s rights. This was the activist generation. This drove behaviour which was broadly characterized as ideological, spiritual, judgemental (A world of black and white), communitarian, perfectionism, values focused and narcissistic.While the Boomer’s crusaded for important changes (elimination of segregation, women’s rights), they also created an environment for their children where divorce reached an all time high, single parents became the norm, latch key kids were a major issue of the time, children were not as valued – looked at as a hardship, families started spreading out and the average 10 year old spent 14.5 minutes a day with a significant adult role model.
These childhood experiences created Gen X, the nomadic (reactive) generation which is characterized by the following core values: accountability, speed, pragmatism, family, diversity and balance. An interesting quote was that Gen X watched their baby boomer parents come home exhausted and stressed from work and said I don’t want that. The Gen X behaviour was characterized as action orientated, results focused, self reliant, risk takers, informal, sceptical and tech savvy. Key Gen X events: The energy crisis, Atari, PCs, Jonestown, Three Mile Island, Ronald Regan Inaugurated, Challenger Disaster and the Exxon Valdez.This lead to significantly different attitudes between generations. Key examples:
|TV GenerationBoomers||PC Generation‘Gen X’|
|Web||What is it?||Web is a tool|
|Outlook on Life||Optimistic||Skeptical|
|Attitude toward Work||Driven||Balanced|
|View of Authority||Love/Hate||Unimpressed|
|Relationship Approach||Self Sacrifice||Reluctant to Commit|
|Decision Making||Team Orientated||Self Reliant|
A very interesting view into my generation and my parent’s generation.