An Introduction to the Baby Boomers and Generation X

Excerpts from ‘iBosses: The Rise of Gen y Entrepreneurs – The Momentum Behind the New Age of Entrepreneurs’:

Baby Boomers are individuals born between 1946 and 1964. Their children are Generation X. Generation X (Gen X) members are individuals born between 1965 and 1979. The term Generation X became popular because of Coupland’s 1991 novel, Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture.

婴儿潮世代指在1946年至1964年出生的一代,他们的子女是X世代,即生于1965年至1979年的人士。道格拉斯.柯普兰(Douglas Coupland)于1991年出版小说《X世代:速成文化的故事》(Generation X ─Tales for an accelerated culture)后,“X世代”一词随即普及起来。

Because the Baby Boomers are said to be active members of the working class and loyal to their employers, Generation X learned from their parents’ experiences and were influenced to have a business of their own. Generation X was said to be the most entrepreneurial generation in history, until Generation Y emerged (Martin, 2005; Zwilling, 2011). Generation Y (Gen Y) are children of Generation X. They were born between 1978 аnd 2000 (Brіdgеrѕ & Jоhnѕоn, 2006). The two generations, Gen X and Gen Y, are both considered highly interested in entrepreneurship. However, Gen X and Gen Y entrepreneurs have differences when it comes to their attitude towards entrepreneurship.

由于婴儿潮世代主要为工薪阶层,对雇主尽忠职守,而X世代受父母的经历启发,倾向创业自主。在Y世代出现前,X世代被视为历来最具创业精神的一代(Martin,2005年;Zwilling,2011年)。X世代在1978年至2000年所生的子女为Y世代 (Brіdgеrѕ & Jоhnѕоn,2006年),虽然两代人都勇于创业,但两代的创业家对创业的态度却截然不同。

Gen X-ers lived in a period where divorce rates were increasing. Studies have shown that Gen X-ers are independent, cynical, adapabtable, expect immediate results, and are committed to their work. Moreover, Gen X-ers are not motivated by money alone; rather, they aim for a work-life balance, challenging work environment, flexible working hours, and self-advancement. These are the things that one cannot achieve as an employee, which was why most Gen X-ers raised money to start their own companies. Gen X-ers planned their businesses well and are described as being risk averse because they have something to prove to their families. They want to prove that quitting their jobs and entering entrepreneurship was worth it (Reuters, 2010).

X世代的离婚率有上升的趋势。研究显示X世代独立自主、愤世嫉俗,而且适应力强、急躁、投入工作。另外,除了金钱回报,他们更着重工作与生活平衡、能挑战自我的工作环境、弹性工作时间和自我提升的机会,普通员工往往无法实现这样的要求,因此不少X世代都努力赚钱以求创业。由于X世代要向家人证明辞去工作和自立门户是个明智的决定,因此他们一般都考虑周全,营商有道,而且不愿承受风险 (Reuters,2010年)。

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