Social scientists have coined a new word to describe the phenomenon many of us have been talking about for some time. It describes the 19 to 30 year olds, who have no desire to leave their parent’s home, get married, or find a permanent career. In the past 20 years, the average age of first marriage has increased by over 5 years in most countries – this is a tidal wave of demographic change. Similarly, the age of birth of first child has increased dramatically since 1990 in most countries. Anecdotal evidence also indicates a surprising number of late 20s and early 30-somethings who still live at home (or who have come back home again).
Linked to this is also this generation’s mobility in the workplace. More than half of all 30 year olds who have a professional qualification are not using that qualification at the moment (research results in South Africa and USA).
There is a great article on these “kidults” by the Rebelution team (a Christian blogsite) of the Harris brothers – read it here. The image comes from their story. Alhough they look at it from a specific Biblical perspective, their general insights are interesting.
In my mind, parents and kids (and kidults) have to understand that a workplace shift has taken place. I firmly believe that up to the age of about 35, its still possible to be experimenting, without real danger to your future career. By the age of 35, in fact, you should aim to know something about everything. You should certainly know yourself – your strengths and weaknesses, your passions and what makes you tick. Then, spend the next 20 years focusing in. By the age of 55 you should know everything about something. You can then spend a further 20 years or so cashing in on your expertise, and pursuing other passions as well. Its a new career cycle. Its here to stay. If you’re talented.

TomorrowToday Global