Defining Sub-Generations of the Millennials (In preparation to discuss High Performance Workspaces)

I’m planning on doing a blog entry on “High Performance Workspaces” and how corporations are saying these are the types of work environments that attract Millennials. I personally highly dislike these so called “High Performance Workspaces”. But in preparation for that video, I want to define the differences in the different age ranges of the Millennial Generation, because I have observed that they are not just one homogeneous group, indeed, I believe their are at least 3 distinct sub-generations or sub-groups within their generation.

Background Info for the chart I created below:

Date Ranges for both Generation X and Millennials have been pulled from Gallup’s definition of the two generations, which are:

Generation X Birth Date Range: 1965 to 1979

Millennial Birth Date Range: 1980 to 1996

So first a little about myself, just to frame the conversation. I’m part of the Tail-End of Generation X, sometimes called the Xennials.

I have broken down the Millennial Generation into 3 separate sub-generational groups, simply named Early, Mid, and Late.

Early Millennials I define having birth date ranges between 1980 and 1985.

Mid Millennials I define between 1986 and 1992.

Finally, I define Late Millennials between 1993 and 1996.

My personal feeling, based on observations I make of my younger cousins and their peers is that the Millennial birth date range should extend to somewhere between 1999 and 2001, however we’ll stick to the Gallup definition.

At the time of this writing I attribute the following observations to Early, Mid, and Late Millennials:

Early Millennial Attributes: In the process of buying their first homes, or are in their first homes, after renting, I find these millennials, moved out of the parents as soon as possible after college. Most are married, some with 1 child and perhaps another on the way. They are in the late stages of the beginning of their career or have settled into their career. While they have adapted to social media as a large part of their social life, they grew up through their teenage years, high school, and even most or all of college without social media, and therefore lean towards real-world social interaction more than their mid and late millennial counterparts. They can balance real-world social interaction with social media interaction equally well. When speaking with them verses an Late Generation Xer, there is almost no real difference. They also fall under the Xennials moniker of the mixed stage of Generation X and Millennials.

Mid Millennial Attributes: Still living at home or perhaps renting, usually with a roommate or perhaps they live together with their significant other, but not married yet. They have only begun their career but many still are working jobs just to make some money to live, such as a Starbucks Barista or other low-wage job. They are still questioning what they really want to do with their life. Where they are with their career search highly depends on what they studied in college. If it was a hard science degree or professional degree, they are probably already in the early stages of their career perhaps already settled into their careers like their Early Millennial counterparts. But if they have a social science or other liberal arts degree, even something like a generic Business degree they may be highly under-employed as their degrees ill-equipped them for the corporate world. These are the Millennials into ideas like Tiny Houses and are trying their best to live out the idea that they are special individuals and they can’t be tied down to a “traditional cubical type job”. This group may have older siblings in the Late Gen-X or Early Millennial range, and if they do not fall into the Millennials that can afford to take care of themselves without much of their parents help, they are constantly compared to their older brothers and sisters or cousins and friends. It creates a hostile environment around the Holidays, and a lot of competition. Usually their older siblings will ignore the competition as they realize there really isn’t any competition to be had. so these Millennials are in actuality competing against their own sense of self. These Millennials grew up with early generation web sites that grew into what we know today as social media. Throughout high school and college, they were using things like Instant Messenger and Chat Rooms, and you start to see the breakdown of where it’s almost easier for this part of the millennial generation to communicate online. Were their old counterparts in the Early Millennial sub-group probably met most of their significant others in the real-world, probably post high school these mid millennials have been using dating web sites for most of their adult life’s to find companionship.

Late Millennials Attributes: They are either still in college or have just graduated, perhaps they are going straight on to graduate school. Most of them are moving back home with their parents right after graduation without job prospects. Again this is highly dependent on their degrees, but also how they spent their summers during college. If they achieved an internship, they are more likely then their peers to be able to find employment that will lead to a career and one that will allow them to support themselves without the help of their parents. The rest will follow the mid-millennials to under-employment type jobs like Baristas or other retail or low wage service jobs. They will be forced to work because their parents tell them they have to do something with their life, and probably complain a lot that their parents “just don’t understand them”. They are still seeking out ways to display their so called “uniqueness” to the world, because they have been told they are special their entire lives and can do “anything they want”. However it’s interesting now, once they return home, their parents are usually on their case asking them, when will they move out of the house and get a real job, etc. They are completely consumed by social media, and many prefer texting or chatting online over real-world conversation. To find them without a smart phone in their hand is like trying to spot a unicorn. Simply it does not exist. Dating to this sub-group is almost exclusively assumed to happen online unless they met someone in college. Even at that point, many for whatever reason still date people via online platforms. Like their older Mid Millennial friends and family, they find themselves in a competition against themselves as their direct friends probably and many of their mid millennial counterparts are in the same situation as they are, and their older siblings in the Early Millennials or Late Gen-Xers simply don’t want to be bothered with their annoyances, they have their own life’s at this point to take care of, and they are quickly drifting further away from this range of Millennials in terms of social standing.


Year Born Age as of 2018 Millennial Sub-Generation Age at September 11th Attacks Age at Start of Housing Crisis 2008 Estimated Start of High School Year High School Graduation Year College Graduation Year
1980 38 Early 21 28 1994 1998 2002
1981 37 Early 20 27 1995 1999 2003
1982 36 Early 19 26 1996 2000 2004
1983 35 Early 18 25 1997 2001 2005
1984 34 Early 17 24 1998 2002 2006
1985 33 Early 16 23 1999 2003 2007
1986 32 Mid 15 22 2000 2004 2008
1987 31 Mid 14 21 2001 2005 2009
1988 30 Mid 13 20 2002 2006 2010
1989 29 Mid 12 19 2003 2007 2011
1990 28 Mid 11 18 2004 2008 2012
1991 27 Mid 10 17 2005 2009 2013
1992 26 Mid 9 16 2006 2010 2014
1993 25 Late 8 15 2007 2011 2015
1994 24 Late 7 14 2008 2012 2016
1995 23 Late 6 13 2009 2013 2017
1996 22 Late 5 12 2010 2014 2018


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1 Response to Defining Sub-Generations of the Millennials (In preparation to discuss High Performance Workspaces)

  1. Pingback: High Performance Workspaces being blamed on the need to Attract Millennials by Corporations! – Planck Hertz

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