The Rise of Gen Z

Bloomberg Magazine recently released new statistics predicting that millennials will soon be surpassed by the population of Generation Z. Generation Z or “Gen Z”, refers to those born between 1995 and 2010. The oldest members of this generation are just beginning to enter the workforce.

With the rise of Gen Z, companies must prepare for the shift in culture that comes along with the differences in these two generations. According to “Rise of Gen Z: New Challenge for Retailers,” a report by Marcie Merriman, the key factor that sets apart the two generations was the quality of self-awareness that was present in Gen Z, instead of self-centeredness seen in previous generations. Members of Gen Z value happiness and seem to be more optimistic in comparison to other generations. They care about bigger causes and want to make a difference in the world.

In a generation that is used to a world of tech and constant connectedness through the web, it is essential that future employers understand the needs of these soon to be employees. While millennials witnessed an introduction to tech, Gen Z has never gone without it. Members of this generation are used to constant streams of information from various devices and along with that comes a change in the way that they work.

Forbes magazine explored the eight ways that Gen Z differs from Millennials in the Workplace:

  1. Motivated by Security: Members of Gen Z want to ensure financial stability and security when it comes to jobs and money.
  2. More Competitive: With technology and a world that is constantly innovating, Gen Z feels the pressure to keep up. They move fast and tend to stay competitive in the workplace, not as collaborative as millennials are.
  3.  Need for Independence: Gen Z values being independent in their projects and decisions. In addition, many of them are skipping higher education and moving straight into the workforce.
  4.  Multitask: Gen Z has grown up with different devices, social media, and streams of content all at the same time. They are used to dividing their attention to many different things and this is a quality they bring to the workplace. It is not uncommon for them to check social media while completing work. There is less of harsh line between work and home for them.
  5.  More Entrepreneurial: Forbes reports that Gen Z is 55% more likely to have a desire to create a business than millennials. Innovation and creativity is highly encouraged in this generation, and many of them are inspired to come up with solutions to better the world.
  6.  Face to Face Communication: While millennials are used to email and Slack for communication, Gen Z highly values talking face to face. They have grown up with technology that allows for the idea of talking face to face, and in person meetings are more attractive to them than email.
  7.  Digital Natives: According to Forbes, 92% of Gen Z has some sort of digital footprint. They have a very natural relationship to technology, allowing them to adapt and pick up new tech and software instantly.
  8.  Expect the Workplace to Conform to their Needs: Gen Z expects the workplace to provide an environment that caters to the needs and habits of their generation.

Sources: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-08-20/gen-z-to-outnumber-millennials-within-a-year-demographic-trends
https://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/20/fashion/move-over-millennials-here-comes-generation-z.html
https://www.forbes.com/sites/deeppatel/2017/09/21/8-ways-generation-z-will-differ-from-millennials-in-the-workplace/#9455fed76e5e