Millennials have been in the news a lot lately. Companies want to know how to market their products to this new, coming of age generation and employers want to know how to recruit and manage new talent that has a much different view of success. Anyway, this millennial frenzy got me thinking about generations. I have lived long enough to see a few of them. Today, I will take a look at my parents’ generation.
They are a part of the Silent Generation, also referred to as The Greatest Generation, and Builders, born 1925-1945. The Great Depression and World War II were two of the defining events in their lives. So, it is little wonder that they are known for their frugality and sacrifice. They are savers who appreciated and took great pains to maintain their materials acquisitions. They were dutiful, black-and-white thinkers who rose to the occasion whether it was military service or just plain old hard work.
I believe this was the generation of the white male (as were all the previous ones.) He worked hard and ruled the roost. There was little time or energy left over for relational niceties. The roles of men, women and children were clearly defined. Men earned a living. Women took care of everything else. Children were taught responsibility. Women and children had very little status.
The great contribution of this generation is that they knew how to be responsible, dedicated, and faithful. These values have significantly waned with each succeeding generation. Unfortunately, these grandparents and great grandparents are rapidly slipping away from us. It would be wise to value them and listen to them while they are still among us. They still have so much to offer.