Ready to prepare your workplace for generation Z?
When Millenials hit the workplace, they caused a stir with their advanced understanding of technology and a concern for finances stemming from growing up during a recession. Millenials are still going strong in the workplace, with nearly 30 more years before some of them can expect to retire, but now a new generation is joining. Generation Z, or those who were born somewhere between the mid 90s and 2012, are here.
Generation Z: A unique group all on its own
Generation Z is the only generation so far that grew up with technology being mainstream. Every other generation can at least remember a time without a smart phone or a tablet, even if that time was in their early childhood. Because of this, Generation Z is even more comfortable with advanced technology in the workplace.
Generation Z also grew up during the middle of the last recession, and has sharp concerns about debt and the value of their education.
Integrating Generation Z
Generation Z is similar to millenials in a lot of respects. Both Millenials and Gen Z are comfortable with technology, enjoy working independently, and want to find real meaning in their work. They do however, have a few key differences that may cause friction. Gen Z tends to prefer a competitive environment, while Millenials prefer collaboration. With Gen Z trying to turn everything into competition, this could cause strife in the workplace.
Generation Z grew up with technology that provided an answer for them almost instantly, no matter the problem. This expectation can carry over to the workforce, and may cause frustration when there is no instant remedy for their work related problems.
They’re also less likely to stay in a job for longer than a year if it doesn’t entirely match their passions. If you want to keep a Generation Z employee long term, here are a few things you can do.
Offer flexible hours and generous vacation times
Generation Z likes to travel. They understand that life experience is more important than material goods, and are willing to take a pay cut in order to get what they want from their jobs. Flexible hours and vacation time allow Generation Z the flexibility they need for better work/life integration.
Offer career related perks
Generation Z is more career motivated than millenials. In a 2015 survey conducted by Adecco Staffing, Generation Z rated career growth as one of their top concerns.1 You can offer these incentives through mentorship programs, and the opportunity to gain new skills by job shadowing people in other departments. Frequent training opportunities will not only increase the skill of these employees, they are also seen as a job perk for this generation.
Upgrade your technology
Generation Z expert David Stillman reports that 90.6% of Generation Z’s use technology as a factor when they decide whether to work for a company or not.2 Reasons cited by Gen Z’s include the accessibility of laptops and tablets, as well as the use of programs such as Google Drive and Skype for the company. Generation Z grew up teething on smart phones, so it should come as no surprise that a high tech company is more interesting to work for than a low tech one.
Generation Z is a dynamic generation with great work ethic, and a clear passion for their careers. If they mesh well with your company, they will bring all their energy and drive with them. If they don’t mesh well with your company values however, they’ll be quick to move on.
Are you ready to prepare your workplace for generation Z? Download here the book The Power of Interactions and make sure you set yourself up for success by aligning your teams, all employees and your workplace towards creating the outstanding employee experience you need to take your organisation to the next level of success.
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