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Gen X, why are you here? We didn't MEAN to breed you!


  • Gen X, why are you here? We didn't MEAN to breed you!

    Generation X encompasses the 4.4 million Australians born between 1965 and 1979, in the Australian context. Due to the concerns with disease , mainly, Australians had a high uptake of pregnancy prevention, No Means No etc, and other disincentives with local Baby Boomers, Gen X is the smallest ever generation, both before and after representing 21% of the population.

    So being in their 30’s and early 40’s, their is a much broader cultural tableau, more ethnically diverse and better educated than the Baby Boomers.

    They swamp middle-management positions in the government, corporate legal departments and other legal practice environments. Male and female the PC dragons have also breathed their deadly curse across our consciousness, the femmo-nasties have a lot to answer for with this somewhat lost and forlorn generation we call X!

    Below are a few common characteristics of Generation X.

    Individualistic: I have 3 Gen Y kids and 1 Generation X so I have had a fair bit of personal insight here. Due to the necessity of two-income families, an explosion of single mothers due to insane support opportunities, like the easy 'out' from any relationship that the CSS outright supports and with the economy in stress, women were joining the workforce in large numbers stooged by the "I deserve a job" mechanism used to expand the workforce, spawning an age of “latch-key” children and doubling consumers overnight.

    Not always the case though and I know things this complex can't be put into a few sentences, but...

    As a result, Generation X can be independent, resourceful and self-sufficient but also indolent, disengaged and disrespectful. The latter I don't blame the GenXers for though, it was the mingers in education of my generation that decided to do a social experiment in our, Victorian at least, education practices. There was a flattening of our education system to mollify the weak at the expense of the strong.

    I still struggle to see how a Government could devalue knowledge, European History, Australian History...lucky they didn't burn The Odyssey and The Iliad... to that degree as they opened the gates to the migration system...bad timing dudes...but it was a dogmatic principle that wounded an Australian Generation. Nothing against the migrants, but combined with a generation of 'good enough' literate kids born here, we have a communication problem. Three Rs thrown out the window, but now they are back and kids feel much better about themselves knowing where they actually stand

    Although the Generation X values freedom and responsibility, in the workplace many in this generation display a casual disdain for authority and structured work hours. They dislike being micro-managed and embrace a hands-off management philosophy. That's cool if you are a gifted contractor or own your own business.

    Technologically Adept: The Generation X mentality reflects a shift from a manufacturing, military and physical labour economy to a service and Public Service economy. They are first generation to grow up with computers, I mean who needs an education when you can Google anything and surprise yourself!

    Problem is most struggle that much with spelling and grammar that even a Google search engine can't help some!

    Flexible: Many GenXers lived through tough economic times in the 1980s and saw their alcoholic and soft drugged parents lose hard-earned positions.

    Thus, Generation X is less committed to employment and more willing to change jobs at a whim than previous generations. They can adapt to change and are tolerant of alternative lifestyles.

    Generation X needs ambition, and no bloody wonder when you understand the process schools go through to make sure 'everyone's a winner', dampening the spirit of the elite, but seem eager to learn new skills, but want to accomplish things on their own terms, I mean really!

    Motivation seems most piqued when the tribes wander off into the bush for mad weekends of peace, love, unity and respect to the never changing beat of the super huge sub woofers!

    Value Work/Life Balance: Unlike previous generations, members of Generation X work to live rather than live to work, in the Australian context read stay living at your parents to amortise the lack of steady income patiently waiting for their inheritance to drop from the perch!

    They find it hard to get away from their childhood toys like computer games and small wheeled vehicles, wear 'formal' shorts and tees when dressing up!

    I'll never forget a bunch of metrosexual motor scooter riders at a club of which I was a member. A gang of them all had motor powered scooters, I don't mean Vespas or anything, motorised planks with steering handles...cracked me up, so cool!

    If you can get them having fun in the workplace you may well get some productivity, the hard yards are difficult to muster enthusiasm for though, too much like actual work, like one gets paid to do...but espouse a work hard/play hard mentality if they feel they are suited to the job and left to their own devices.

    Corporate bonding sessions are popular with Generation X managers, incorporating humor and games into the workplace, which seems to reflect the 'Hey, everyone's a winner baby' result of the '80's/90's education system in Australia where the bar was lowered to reflect better results for the less developed around them.

    Conclusion: Generation X are one of the smallest generational population groups we have had, proportionately in Australia, and no wonder when you consider that contraception and abortion were introduced in the 70's and used ad hoc during the pre-Aids 'Free Love' Baby Boomer generation, with a cross over into the previous 'Swinger' BB subset...I mean really, who is your daddy??? If you made it you are damned lucky!

    Stop 'polishing the tits off the Queen!', as my nana used to say when I was over shuffling the cards in a Sunday visitation game of Euchre. Put the skateboard away, or better still send it to Skateistan. Get on with it before Gen Y move forward and swamp your options.

    Just sayin'...I don't want to go OTT!

    (Heavily borrowed, don't take it too seriously, eh?)
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