Are you ready for the most significant workforce shift in over 100 years? Undoubtedly, moving forward, this shift will dramatically affect how we communicate and interact. For the first time in our lifetime, we have the potential of working with four different generations in the same workplace. (Four if you include Boomers who don’t want to retire and the Traditionals, Gen X who can’t afford to.) In each generation, the Boomers, Gen X, Millennials, and Gen Z communicate, interact with others, and are motivated by different values, wants, and needs.
Worth Remembering … “We need to remember that there is as much to learn as to teach across generations.”
If you thought Millennials were challenging – think again. You haven’t met Generation Z – the Zoomers yet. They are very different from Millennials. Generation Z, born between 1996 and 2004, is the newest generation to enter the workforce in mass. (Representing 22% of the population.) They are the first to grow up in the digital age – the first generation to grow up with the internet, smartphones, text messages and social media. Think of the Zoomers as the hyper-connected generation. Gen Z has a unique culture and working style that can baffle Millennial, Gen X and Boomer managers. The days of working long hours for little pay, feeling dissatisfied, unappreciated and burned out are over. For Gen Z, life outside of work is just as important as life at work. Living a balanced life is not a slogan to them. It’s their way of life.
Worth Remembering … “All generations have similar values; they just have a different way of expressing them differently.”
Your success as a manager or leader working with Gen Z will hinge on your ability to work with them in a style they like. If you can adapt your management style to be more in tune with how they like to be managed, they will be more receptive because you are working with them in the way they like. If you want to be more successful working with Zoomers, consider that they are intelligent, highly educated, bold, enterprising and entrepreneurial. They like to communicate face-to-face via WhatsApp. Gen Z is socially well-informed and prepared to fight for what they believe in. They are committed to making a difference in the world. They prefer a flexible work schedule, not your typical 9 to 5. They are self-starters but crave constant and immediate feedback. So get ready – your world is about to change. The Zoomers have arrived.
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