By Salt 106.5 Network Wednesday 9 Oct 2019NewsReading Time: 3 minutes
The new generation of youngsters is Gen Alpha (see why we named them that, here). They are currently aged under 10 and are born between 2010 and 2024. They are the children of Gen Y, who are currently in their 20-30’s. There are 3 million Gen Alpha’s in Australia, who are now populating our primary schools.
This generation is and will be defined by technological devices like smartphones and tablets, video games, driverless trains, autonomous cars and smart speakers that speak back to you. This technology has only been developed within their generation and it is all they have ever known.
How do they compare to other generations?
Gen Alpha will be the largest generation as we have a greater population than ever before. They will live for longer and are more culturally diverse compared to the former generations. Their technology makes them the most globally connected generation ever. Gen Alpha are deemed social, global and mobile as they will work, study and travel between multiple careers.
The most technologically infused generation
It is almost impossible to pry Gen Alpha away from their devices. Their exposure to technology during their formative early years will have a great impact on their lives.
Gen Alpha began to be born in the year 2010, the same year the first-generation iPad was released, and the year Instagram launched. They have been using these devices from before they could talk so we are yet to see the impacts of their interaction with screens. There will certainly be some positives but Gen Alpha will also face certain challenges.
What kind of jobs will Gen Alphas have in 20 years?
Massive changes are happening to the workforce, as some jobs disappear and new jobs emerge. Gen Alphas will have careers in emerging fields such as cyber-security, app development and cryptocurrency. They will be lifelong learners, holding multiple jobs across multiple careers. They will also be adaptive, constantly needing to up skill and retrain to remain relevant.
Gen Alpha will live longer and be wealthier
Gen Alphas will be students for longer. They will stay longer in education and start their earning years later, which will put them behind financially. By pushing back their working years to invest more in education, this means they will stay at home for longer.
Advancements in medicine and technology results in an aging population, so Gen Alpha will live longer. Their adult life stage of work, marriage and having children will occur later. They will also be wealthier as they will work longer before retiring.
For Gen Alpha, retirement will not mean stopping working. Rather it will mean downsizing and downshifting, allowing them to stay active later in life, as working into their 60’s and 70’s will become the norm.
Should parents of Gen Alphas be worried about their future?
Parents need to give Gen Alphas confidence, as many young people face insecurities and mental health issues about an uncertain future we are constantly painting for them. Parents should encourage Gen Alphas to invest in the future.
By investing in training and education in both life skills and people skills, Gen Alphas can remain relevant and have the confidence to move forward.
How can grandparents of Gen Alphas stay connected?
The role of grandparents has significantly stepped up in our society as they play important roles in the lives of Gen Alphas. Baby boomers have a depth of life experience and knowledge they can instill in their grandkids to stay connected in their lives. Grandparents now also take on a larger caring role as Gen Alphas parents, the Gen Ys, are working more.
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About the Author: McCrindle are a team of researchers and communications specialists who discover insights, and tell the story of Australians – what we do, and who we are.