Baby Boomers encourage change. What about the other generations? Why are the generations so different?

Each generation had significant events during their formative years. These events and trends have affected the way each generation sees the world.

Veterans or Traditionals experienced the Great Depression and World War II. So they don’t spend money freely and patriotism is very important to this oldest generation.

The Baby Boomers grew up during the Vietnam Era, the Civil Rights Movement, and Women’s Liberation. This generation experienced being change agents and believe individuals can make a difference.

Generation Xers grew up with Watergate and corporate lay-offs. Gen Xers may not be able to fully trust government institutions or big business. Xers grew up in single-parent homes and are self-reliant and are independent.

Millennials or Generation Y grew up with school violence, terrorism, and multiculturalism. So Millennials have a concern for personal safety and expect diversity in the workplace.

Different life experiences create generational sub-cultures. A culture that has been shaped by the values of one generation isn’t necessarily going to be compatible with the next generation. Throw in a big dose of technology and the friction gets worse.

The generations are different and for good reason. It is sometimes hard to measure the general impact that these historical events have had on our personal and professional values and concerns. But I do know this; our personal history does have an impact on our priorities and expectations today.

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