Monday, September 01, 2008
GenerationME - Understanding Younger Generations and Challenges for the Gospel - Post 1
I mentioned in my previous post that I was going to start a whole series of entries covering the important data provided in the great book, GenerationME: Why Today’s Young Americans Are More Confident, Assertive, Entiteld-- and More Miserable Than Ever Before by Jean M. Twenge, PhD. I have been spending much of the past several years trying better to understand my own generation and those younger than me. So far, I have Dr. Twenge’s book to be the best out there. So, here comes the series on the book, and today’s first post is about the dangers of so much of what we have been told about those born 1970 and later. Oh and of course, commentary from yours truly.
Here is the the first highlight from GenerationME (pages 5-6)
All of this, and we don’t have a name. People born in the late 1960s to the 1970s are often labeled “GenerationX,” but they have not been reexamined since being named in the early 1990s, long before their primary identity veered from slackers to Internet millionaires. It’s just not clear that the GenX label fits now that flannel shirts are out. One advertising executive called the early 1990s description of this generation as bored cynics “the most expensive marketing mistake in history.” Some descriptions (and broth years) of GenX overlap with what I call GenerationMe but its’ clear that the GenX description is incomplete and often misguided. And the generation born in the 1980s and 1990s—today’s children, teenagers, and people in their early twenties—has no name at all. Some marketers have used “GenY,” which simply parrots the GenX label and thus probably won’t last long: who wants to be named after the people older than you? Some have called young people the “Net Generation,” as this is the first generation to grow up with the internet, but this label has not caught on (and being the first to experience something doesn’t mean much; Boomers were the first “TV Generation,” but later generations have clearly trumped them in their attachment to the boob tube).