Understanding the Generational Culture Clash Happening in the U.S. Workforce Today

Generational Theory

Breaking Down the Generations*

Traditionalists

  • Born: 1925–1945
  • U.S. Births: 47 million
  • Share Experiences: the Great Depression, WWI & WWII
  • Characteristics: Hardworking, loyal, cautious, formal, proud, respectful of authority, tech-challenged

Baby Boomers

  • Born: 1946–1964
  • U.S. Births: 76 million
  • Shared Experiences: rise of America as a superpower, expanding consumerism, the Civil Rights movement
  • Characteristics: Self-focused, competitive, optimistic, “forever young” mentality

Gen X

  • Born: 1965–1980
  • U.S. Births: 55 million
  • Shared Experiences: rise of the Internet and the dot-com bubble, 9/11
  • Characteristics: Independent, cautious, skeptical, tech pioneers

Millennials

  • Born: 1981–1996
  • U.S. Births: 62 millions
  • Shared Experiences: rise of social media, the Great Recession
  • Characteristics: Self-expressive, group oriented, purpose-driven, tech dependent

Gen Z

  • Born: 1997 — TBD
  • U.S. Births: TBD
  • Shared Experiences: full integration of technology into all aspects of life, expanding awareness around diversity, gender, and LGBTQA rights
  • Characteristics: Cautious, technologically advanced, diverse

Defining Key Terms

Multigenerational

Cross-generational

Intergenerational

The Road to Multigenerational Success

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