For the first time in history, 6 generations are living in the current society. The thinking pattern, purchasing behavior, use of technologies and social connections are different from one generation to another. Through this article, let’s have a better look at the characteristics of the 06 generations in society and the differences in their behavior.
What is a generation?
Generation is a set of people who are born in a similar era and who share a similar type of life experiences, similar thinking patterns and a similar way of living. There is no specific measurement to divide between the generations, but for the ease of recognizing each set of people with common characteristics are categorized into one generation. The 6 generations in the society at the moment are silent generation, baby boomers, generation x, generation y, generation z, and generation alpha.
01. Silent generation
Silent generation is the people who are born between 1925 to 1945. These are the people who are born in the time period of the Second World War and who experienced the economic downturn due to the world war. This is a time period where people believed that children should be seen, but not heard. Since they spent most of their childhood working and not getting a chance to talk, the generation is labeled as ‘Silent Generation’. Silent generation is currently passing their 70s and most of them are enjoying their retirement benefits.
There are a few specific characteristics that have been identified in the people who belong to the silent generation.
- They were born and raised in a time period where the luxury was a rare thing. They are not used to be pampered with luxury living styles and they always try to satisfy their needs with minimal gods and services.
- Silent generation has a very strong work ethic. They treat work with more importance than their personal life and they can be considered as most loyal to the employer out of all the generations in society.
- This generation is more concerned with achieving their goals. They do not expect any recognition in return and simply enjoy doing their part loyally.
- This is a generation with minimum technological knowledge. They were not exposed to technological advancements like other generations and they got the least hands-on experience in technological systems.
02. Baby Boomers
These are the generation who are born between 1946 and 1964. This generation is considered as the ones who got exposed to the post-world war prosperity. After the world war, the soldiers who were in the war fields returned to their homes and the number of childbirths increased drastically within that time period. This was the reason for the generation to be named ‘Baby Boomers’. Let’s discuss the common characteristics of the baby boomer generation in society.
- Baby boomers are work-oriented. They give priority to the work than their personal life. But they expect rewards in return. These are not necessarily financial rewards. But they expect recognition and appreciation from the employer for their hard work.
- This generation is not very exposed to technological advancements. The technological revolution started in their time but they were not exposed much to the fast-changing technologies. They don’t feel comfortable in working with technologies and prefer the traditional methods of doing things.
- Baby boomers can be recognized as a loyal set of people when it comes to purchasing patterns. They always prefer brand loyalty and not willing to experience new brands.
- Boomers are considered as traditional thinkers as they like to think and work within a traditional frame and not willing to take risks of thinking outside the box.
03. Generation X
This generation belongs to the people who are born between 1965 to 1980. This is a generation who are considered as more independent than the other generations. They were born in an era where the divorce rate was high in the society and their boomer mothers joined with the workforce to support single-parent homes. Known as the “Latch-key” generations, these characteristics made the gen Xers more independent from all 06 generations in the society.
A few common characteristics of generation X are listed below.
- Generation X is the first generation to have full technological work experience. They contribute to most of the technological advancements in the world.
- Generation Xers are considered as independent thinkers. They are willing to think outside the box and take independent decisions.
- The social conditions they grew up have created trust issues in them. They are not willing to stay dedicated to one employer and would willingly move to a new workplace if the benefits are better.
- The gen Xers purchasing patterns are also based on the benefits they can get. They have a favorites brand but willing to move to another brand if it offers something better.
04. Generation Y
This is the generation that is born between 1981- 1996. This generation is called millennials, echo boomers or iGeneration. Raised under the close attention of helicopter parents who taught to believe that they are the best in society, generation Y is expecting attention and recognition from society. There are a few characteristics that help to highlight the millennials from all 06 generations in society.
- Generation Y is tech-savvy and result oriented. They are willing to experience new technological advancements. They quickly learn the changing new technologies and would not hesitate to use technology.
- Millennials are family-oriented and they admire work-life balance. Money is not the main motive for them to work with one employer, but work-life balance is a definite expectation.
- Millennials expect to climb the career ladder as fast as possible. They do not want to feel stagnated in one job role.
- Purchasing habit of the millennials is mostly based on the performance of the product or the service. They don’t show much of a tendency for brand loyalty.
05. Generation Z
Generation Z is the people who are born between 1996-2010 and they are the most technologized out of all 06 generations in society. This is the generation that just started joining the workforce. They accessed new technologies from young age and technology is just a normal part of their day-to-day life. Let’s discuss the common characteristics of generation Z.
- Generation Z is seeking constant attention. They always expect the superiors to admire their work.
- This generation is looking for faster methods of doing things. They do not like to stick to traditional policies and procedures. They use new technologies for innovative methods to re-engineer processes with better and faster outcomes.
- Generation Z people are brand oriented. Branding is considered a social status for them. But they do not show any signs of brand loyalty.
- Work-life balance is one of the key expectations for gen Z employees. They always want to stay connected with friends and family and work is merely a way of funding their lifestyle.
06. Generation Alpha
Generation Alpha is the newest addition to the 06 generations in society. They are the generation who are born after 2011 till now. Even though it’s little too early to analyze the behavior of the generation Alpha, there are certain characteristics identified common to the generation.
- Generation Alpha is the children of millennials. They are expected to be even more tech-savvy than generation Z. Since the technology is developing rapidly, gen Alpha is expected to be a part of the new technological development.
- Alpha generation is an independent generation who does not like to be controlled by rules. They want to work independently and to make autonomous decisions.
- Alpha generation is more interested in environmental healthy purchases. They like to have fresh and organic food and live an environmental-friendly lifestyle. Alpha generation is expected to be the generation with the longest life expectancy.
- This generation can be considered as a worry-free generation where they tend to live life at the moment without taking things seriously.