Generation X
“Work hard/play hard is my motto”

Generation X has a median age of 48, a median net worth of $84,000, is ethnically diverse, and is likely to be married with 2 children above the age of 12.

Gen X is individualistic, independent, resourceful, self-reliant, and adaptable.  This generation has a strong sense of entitlement, a tendency to test authority, and a disposition toward cynicism and anger, often without a clear understanding of the cause of these feelings. 

Gen X has a “work hard/play hard” mentality that thrives on variety and stimulation.  For this generation, working hard has more to do with skills and results than with a strong work ethic.  This perspective makes them eager to learn new skills and to be good with short-term problem solving, albeit less good with long-term strategies or at appreciating how their input affects the whole.

Gen X’s individualism causes them to marry later in life and to uphold the value of self-actualization over marital stability.  Although members of this generation are unlikely to stay in an unhappy marriage “for the sake of the children,” they nonetheless are proud of their children and have adopted a parenting style that lets minor issues slide while dealing forcefully and swiftly with serious issues.

Gen X is somewhat pessimistic about the state of the environment and tries to think globally about important issues.  Politically, they have a distrust of authority figures and a view that the US “is not the same dominant power as it once was.”  Despite these feelings, they consider themselves to be patriotic and report that they are very likely to vote in presidential elections. 

Financially, Gen X expresses a general sense of uneasiness about their economic future, stating that they are cautious with money, fear that they may need to work beyond the age of 65 because they will not have enough set aside for retirement, and are concerned that Social Security will no longer provide full benefits by the time they reach retirement age.  In addition to retirement concerns, they also feel financial insecurity over the need to save for their children’s college education, to pay off their own college debt, and to cope with a mortgage that is higher than they would like.  Their concerns over money have resulted in a reluctance to make major investment decisions on their own, turning instead to financial advisors whom they trust to work in their best interest.

Gen X is the first generation to grow up with computers as part of their daily lives.  Because of their early exposure, they are comfortable with new technologies and innovations, eager to own multiple devices, and are regular users of online services.

In the marketplace, Gen X regularly shops online, showing a fair degree of brand loyalty and being strongly influenced by the recommendations of family, friends, and online reviews.