drives someone to want to get up in the morning
and come to work for your organization?
As it turns out, workplace engagement matters
less to Generation Z than it did to previous generations. What’s most important to us is compensation and bene;ts. We are realists and pragmatists
who view work primarily as a way to make a living
rather than as the main source of meaning and
purpose in our lives.
Obviously, we’d prefer to operate in an enjoyable environment, but ;nancial stability takes
precedence. XYZ University discovered that 2 in
3 Generation Zers would rather have a job that
o;ers ;nancial stability than one that they enjoy.
That’s the opposite of Millennials, who generally
prioritize ;nding a job that is more ful;lling over
one that simply pays the bills.
That ;nancial focus likely stems in part from
witnessing the struggles our parents faced. According to a study by the Pew Charitable Trust,
“Retirement Security Across Generations: Are
Americans Prepared for Their Golden Years?,”
members of Generation X lost 45 percent of their
wealth during the Great Recession of 2008.
“Gen X is the ;rst generation that’s unlikely to
exceed the wealth of the group that came before it,”
says Erin Currier, former project manager of Pew’s
Economic Mobility Project in Washington, D.C.
“They have lower ;nancial net worth than previous
groups had at this same age, and they lost nearly
half of their wealth in the recession.”
Employers will also need to recognize that mem-
bers of Generation Z crave structure, goals, chal-
lenges and a way to measure their progress. After
all, the perceived road to success has been mapped
out for us our entire lives.
At the same time, it’s important to be aware of
the potential for burnout among young overachievers—and to incorporate fun and breaks into the
work environment and provide access to healthy
escapes focused on relaxation and stress relief.
4. GEN Z IS ENTREPRENEURIAL
Even though they witnessed their parents grapple
with ;nancial challenges and felt the impact of
the worst economic meltdown since the Great Depression, members of Generation Z believe there
is a lot of money to be made in today’s economy.
Shows like “Shark Tank” have inspired us to look
favorably on entrepreneurship, and we’ve also seen
how technology can be leveraged to create exciting—and lucrative—business opportunities with
relatively low overhead. Fifty-eight percent of the
members of my generation want to own a business
one day and 14 percent of us already do, according
to X YZ University.
Organizations that emphasize Generation Z’s
desire for entrepreneurship and allow us space to
contribute ideas will see higher engagement because
we’ll feel a sense of personal ownership. We are motivated to win and determined to make it happen.
5. GEN Z IS CONNECTED
Before Generation Z was decreed the “official”
name for my generation, there were a few other
candidates, including the “Sel;e Generation” and
I ;nd those proposed names both condescend-
ing and misleading. While it’s often assumed that
Generation Z is focused solely on technology,
talking face to face is our preferred method of
communication. Sure, social media is important
and has undoubtedly a;ected who we are as a
generation, but when we’re communicating about
something that matters to us, we seek authenticity
to Gen Z?
Before Generation Z was decreed the ‘official’ name
for my generation, there were a few other candidates,
including the ‘Selfie Generation’ and ‘iGen.’
Source: X YZ University.