Generational history is cyclical. That’s where we get the phrase, “œHistory repeats itself”. In understanding our history, we can understand our future.
In generational theory, four main generational archetypes exist, and history indicates that the impact on society and culture by each generation lasts for approximately twenty years.
The four generational types are known in academia as Prophet, Nomad, Hero and Artist. Each of these types impact society in a different way and write our history for us.
For example, Prophets experience childhood in a victory era after a long and dark time, and generally bring a sense of territory and ownership as adults. These are the Baby Boomers of today.
Nomads experience childhood during an era of failing adult institutions. As young adults, they are concerned with doing more than talking. Nomads of today are Generation X.
Nomads typically give way to a Hero generation where resources are consolidated, belts are tightened and the excesses of the Nomads are reigned in. This generation is today’s Millennial generation (often errantly called Generation Y).
Heroes experience young adulthood when the culture is in a crisis mode and they exist to bring hope to a culture. They inspire and unite. They see the world in an optimistic and upbeat way because hope is their mantra. Heroes brought hope and perseverance during the Great Depression and World War II era and caused the nation to unite in solidarity to battle the tough times.
On Saturday night, on the Aaron Brazell Show, I’m really excited to have Jessie Newburn join me (you can follow her on Twitter too). Jessie is all over this stuff and is looking at the world through these lenses. As Generation X is pushing into midlife, Millenials are entering adulthood. How is this going to change our culture, society and world in business, technology, etc?