The term ‘baby boomer’ is used in demographics to refer to a person who was born during the post World War II baby boom. The term is sometimes used in the context of a cultural nature. Generally though, baby boomers are usually associated with the discard or redefinition of known traditional values and many scholars do not agree with this. They however reach a concensus that this group of people grew up at a time of affluence and were the healthiest as well as wealthest growing up at a time when the world was in all honesty expected to make improvement with time.Generation Y on the other hand, also referred to the ‘millennial generation’, is a term used to refer to those born from the mid 1970s to around early 2000 and are the children of baby boomers. Some scholars have regarded the year 1982 as the beginning birth year for Generation Y, what is undisputed is that, it is the generation that succeeded baby boomers, who are also known as ‘Generation X’.
Advantages of Baby Boomers and Generation Y
1) Baby Boomers
Between the years 1945 and 1964, baby boom era, 76 million children were born in America. This did not only inject fresh blood into the labour market which absorbed this population in a couple of years but also provided a huge market to all manner of products and services present in America (Russell, Louise B 1982). Statistics showed that in 2004, the UK baby boomers were the owners of 80% of that nations wealth, it is very clear from this data that the so called baby boomers, played a very significant role in creating wealth, because they came with totally new ideas of wealth creation and thanks to them, the whole world and not the UK alone is a big part of what it is today (Gillon, Steve 2004).
Baby boomers initiated very dramatic social change for the better that cut across race, nations and cultures. Thanks to this generation the journey to bridging racial divide was began. They found strength in common areas of agreement like music, arts, and movies and so on. Some social conservatives may look at this as a set back but in my opinion, this was a step in the right direction. Baby boomers were fun loving and that love for fun ended up in different genres of music like soul, funk, rap among others coming up. These genres have shaped the world today and we owe it to the baby boomers that today, we have white rap artists as well as black rock stars (Steinhorn, Leonard 2006).
2) Generation Y
Having being pampered by baby boomer parents who were not ready to make mistakes, this generation grew up very confident and are very ambitious not to mention being very achievement oriented. They are today’s workforce and are not afraid to question authority. Their confidence has led to the creation of totally new ideas in the world. This is one generation that believes thay can accomplish anything at whatever age and thanks to them the world today has facebook, twitter and many more new ideas conceived and delivered exclusively by this generation.
Education and very good education is a major drive to this generation. At a very tender age this part of the population achieve what can be best be described as quality education and coupled with their high self esteem and confidence, this generation is achieving the unthinkable (Sheahan, Peter 2005). At ages as young as 18 years, generation Y have managed to find their way into board rooms that took earlier generations decades to get to. This is one advantage of generation Y because they bring with them, fresh and totally new ideas into organizations, sports and all fields they ever get in contact with. The belief that you can be anything you want to be, this generation has no limit on their dreams and they never give up on these ambitions. Also known as generation Twitter/ Facebook, this lot is simply brilliant (Newman, 2008).
Disdvantages of Baby Boomers and Generation Y
Baby boomers had a short coming of not planning for their future, they somehow avoided the thought of aging and this is going to put a lot of pressure of particular economies. Given that they were very concious of raising small families, this generation has today brought the problem of too many aged and unproductive people taking a large fraction of the total population in certain countries. Japan is already feeling this effect. The same attitude has been passed on to generation Y, who today live a day at a time without the thought of the future (Smith J. 2007)
Baby boomers radical social change ended up with the loss of cultural identity, this was later passed to Generation Y and today, so many cultures have been consumed by the popular pop culture. This is a huge set back brought by these two generations. Many nations are today struggling with the fight to keep their cultural heritage, a battle that is being lost at rates that are beyond immagination (Tulgan, Bruce. 2009).
Given the self confidence exhibited by this generation, there is cynicism that a lot of the things around them are beyond their control and a good number of them have adopted the ‘why bother’ attitude. This is bound to change with the kind of information that they are exposed to through all the social and other media they frequently come across. A good indication is the on going Arab Revolution that was initiated and is currently spear headed by Generation Y.