The topic of Millennials in the workplace has exploded over the last few years, especially since this generation now represents the largest part of the American workforce. However, with all of this focus on Millennials, many people have forgotten to pay attention to the next generation that believe it or not, is now making their way into the workplace, Generation Z. Take a look at how this new group will shake up things in the office:
Whereas Millennials valued a loose, open workplace, Generation Z desires more order and structure. Because of this, it will be interesting to see how the newly designed open floor workspaces mesh with the Gen Z workers.
While Millennials adore space that allows them to easily work in teams and collaborate, the members of Gen Z prefer a balance of group and independent work. Employers must find a way to create a workspace that allows employees to have privacy while still giving them space to work together as a team.
Employers will need to work overtime to retain Generation Z. A recent survey showed that 83% of this generation believes that they will spend less than three years at their first job.
What’s the reason? Unlike Millennials, Gen Z value career growth and development above anything else when it comes to their jobs, so if one company doesn’t offer rewarding opportunities, this generation will have no problem leaving for another. Employers need to invest in professional growth opportunities in order to attract and retain these new workers.
Millennials have long held the reputation of being overly confident and ready to take the business world by storm, but Gen Z will not follow in these footsteps. In fact, this generation reports higher levels of anxiety in terms of finding a job, performing well at it, and discovering career opportunities that fit well with their specific skills and personality. This could mean that Gen Z won’t fall victim to the “lazy, entitled” stereotype that has followed Millennials for years, since they will show more gratitude for jobs that they do have.
Whereas Millennials are very concerned with working for an organization that has a purpose and socially beneficial cause, Gen Z is more motivated by money. This generation has grown up during the Great Recession witnessing their parents struggle to find or keep work. Because of this upbringing, they crave a predictable, stable paycheck.
In addition, Gen Z has seen the Millennial generation weighed down by the financial burden of student debt, and reports higher levels of anxiety about paying back debt than other generations.
Similarities Between Millennials and Gen Z.
Although there are many differences between these two generations in the workplace, it’s not hard to find similarities, either. Both generations covet stronger, more personal relationships with the higher ups in the office and actively seek out mentors to help with professional development. Because of this, it is probable that Millennials managing Gen Z employees will be very successful, as they prefer the same type of leadership.
Because both generations grew up surrounded by technology, it’s no surprise that they both are incredibly tech-savvy and look for new ways to integrate tech into the work world and increase efficiency. Both generations would be strong in a sales role such as a wholesale distributor, but for different reasons. While Millennials have smarter, more personalized sales tactics, members of Gen Z will enjoy the entrepreneurial side of sales and the face-to-face communication.
How do you think Gen Z will change the workplace and get along with Millennial co-workers? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!