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Gen X – Demographics and Characteristics

Generation X, children of the tail end of the Greatest Generation and the beginning of the Baby Boomers, are people born between 1965 and 1980 and are becoming “middle aged” now.  

This is my generation and it was kind of fun to take this walk down memory lane!

Gen X - Demographics and Characteristics

There are about 45 million of members of Generation X.  We are a generation who are raising families, and reaching the age our parents anticipated retirement, but know we can’t retire that early.  Here are more interesting demographics. 

Generation X Demographics

45 million members (versus 80 million Baby Boomers and 78 million Millennials) grew up in a time when those Boomer parents were finding themselves in their careers or higher education.  

Additional Resource :: Customer Demographics Age Ranges and Names

Called “latchkey kids” because of neither parent being home when the kids got out of school, we also lived with broken families, more daycare and less supervision.  As teens we were the “MTV Generation” (when MTV actually played music videos).  

As adults we try and find a good work-life balance and are active in our children’s lives (sometimes to the point of becoming helicopter parents).  

Additional Resource :: Boomer Parents, Millennial Kids and Gen X Parents, Gen Z Kids

Have you seen those memes on social media about how Gen X grew up and managed to live through it?  

It’s true, when we were very young, seat belts and car seats for babies and toddlers were optional.  Unsupervised 10- and 11-year-old kids babysat their younger brothers and sisters (I started when I was 8), rode bikes without helmets, drank from hose, played lawn darts, and stayed out playing with friends during the summer until the streetlights went on…without parents worrying.  

Woman Entrepreneur

This generation has been quite successful in entrepreneurial endeavors.  According to the 2010 Census, approximately 84 million people living in the U.S. are part of this generation.  

This generation saw the advent of computers, cable TV, AIDS, October 1987 Stock Market crash and 1990’s recovery and the Great Recession.  

65 percent of Gen Xers are currently working full-time and 70 percent are rather unsure that Social Security will provide full or even any benefits.  

One quarter of them have been at the same job for 15 years or longer.  82 percent are homeowners and their homes have an average value of $238,000.

74 percent use the Internet for banking, 72 percent use it to research products or companies, and 81 percent have made purchases online.  95 percent have a page on Facebook, 35 percent have LinkedIn profiles, and 25 percent regularly post to Twitter. They are very brand loyal (70 percent). 

Characteristics of Gen X

Ok, so what are some of the characteristics of Generation X?  We value hard work along side of taking time for family activities (think soccer moms and dads).  

Having workplace flexibility is important, as is being able to work independently.  We hate being micromanaged and will leave a job if it is too micromanaged or inflexible.  

Gen X is responsible for some of the most influential Web sites of today, including YouTube,, and Google.  We are independent thinkers and self-reliant. They prefer to do things our own way, just like we could when they were latch-key kids!

Additional Gen X Resources and Sources

Gen X - Demographics and Characteristics