What About Millennials?

Are you a Baby Boomer, Gen Xer or Millennial?

If you’re not quite sure which of these categories you fit into, here’s the rundown.

  • Boomers were born between1946 and 1964, during a period of increased births, coinciding with the return of soldiers from World War II.
  • Year estimates for Gen Xers vary but are approximately from 1965-1979.  This generation is often referred to as the “latchkey kids” due to rising divorce numbers, along with more mothers entering the work force. 
  • Millennials, more widely known as Generation Y (also called Echo Boomers after 1989 resulted in the largest number of births since 1964), were born beginning in the early 80s.  This high-tech generation gained the “Millennial” moniker with the rise of the Internet and technology.

Just as each of these time periods are typified by unique characteristics, so are the people born into them.  While Gen Xers are noted for being self-starters, a skilled gained from their latchkey years, they are also criticized for lacking teamwork skills.  Millennials, on the other hand, are often typecast as being great at teamwork but struggling when it comes to responsibility. 

“Millennials Need to Get Real About Work World,” an article supporting this idea, reports that many employers find Millennials to be invaluable for their technological know-how but unable to problem solve.  This is a result, some to say, of being overprotected and facing little hardship.  This generation, the article states, “never had their own alarm clock.  Mama got them up.” 

So, if you are of this generation, do these traits describe you?  What about the parents of these children?  Have you seen such characteristics in your child?   Millennials are certainly educated, technologically advanced and strong team players.  If they are in fact lacking “real-world grounding,” how can we help them best use the skills they bring to the table and become more accountable in other areas?

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