A: Generation X, the sons and daughters of Baby Boomers, represent a generation of over 82 million babies born between 1965 and 1979. This year, Generation X will surpass Baby Boomers in number and will hold the highest education level of any current age group in the workforce.
Unlike Baby Boomers who were shaped by the protest movements in the 60’s, JFK, RFK and MLK, Generation X has been shaped by other influences such as latchkeys, Watergate and the personal computer.
It has been said that Gen Xers have a difficult time finding their “generational persona.” “They’re savvy, skeptical and self-reliant; they’re not into preening or pampering, and they just might not give much of a hoot what others think of them, or whether others think of them at all.”
If you are managing Generation X employees, please keep these important points in mind:
- The average tenure for members of Gen X in any one job is five years.
- They are natural skeptics. Recessions, layoffs, outsourcing, “rightsizing” and hiring freezes have caused Gen X to be skeptical about their employers
- They are not expecting any loyalty from their company; they view employment as a contract.
- Gen Xers tends to embrace technology very quickly and are early adopters.
- The best way to motivate a member of this generation is to say: “Do it your way” or “Find a new way to do this.”
- Work-life balance is vital to Gen X.
- Unlike Baby Boomers whose preferred method of communication is the telephone; email is the preferred method of communication for Gen Xers.
The best part of being a Gen Xer is that we Boomers have worked hard to give our sons and daughters as much as we could to give them a leg up in life…a good education, great healthcare, equality, opportunity and straight teeth.
And it’s time for Generation X to step up and take their place as the future leaders in the workforce. I think they will be great.
Roll Over Beethoven.
Ken Lazar, CEO
Ability Professional Network, LLC
Experts in Recruiting Sales Professionals