Millennials were the last generation to enter the workforce, and they have definitely transformed it, but it’s time to make room for the wave of the next generation. With Gen Z knocking at the door, it’s important to know what your youngest employees will need the most. Gen Zers and the previous generation may have some similarities but there are some specific things that Gen Z needs to thrive in the workplace.
Gen Z is the first generation to grow up with the internet and social media. Previous generations have adopted new technology, whereas Gen Zers are digital natives. Since they were born in the era of smartphones, they’re constantly up to date on the latest apps and platforms, so quickly picking up new software has become second nature to them. Workplaces should harness the tech-savviness of this generation and leverage technology as much as they can. Gen Zers are by far the best multitaskers, and when given the right technology and resources, there’s no telling what they’re capable of.
Though this generation is incredibly self-reliant, Gen Z thrives on personal one-on-one coaching even more than millennials and previous generations. As they join the workforce, this helps them feel more comfortable and makes it easier for them to integrate into a workplace. This generation craves active involvement from their managers, especially at the beginning of a new job. Personalized coaching or even peer-to-peer coaching will continuously engage Gen Zers and offer them the hands-on interaction they desire.
Feedback is one of the most crucial things any employee needs. When it comes to Gen Z, the culture needs to be focused on frequent feedback. This new generation’s mindset even takes negative feedback better than previous generations, as they’re more inclined to see it as an opportunity to learn. Gen Z’s progressive nature encourages constructive criticism, but recognition and reassurance are just as essential. This constant feedback ensures that they feel connected and engaged.
Gen Z grew up in a constantly evolving world, so they understand the need for continuous development to stay relevant. They may even be the fastest learners the workforce has seen, but Gen Zer’s have a slightly competitive nature because of this. They’re competitive and want to be judged on their own work; this means that they value skill development and self-improvement. This generation is willing to work hard and work on themselves to develop and keep progressing.
Gen Z reports higher levels of anxiety and depression than any other generation. Stress is one of the biggest obstacles preventing millennials and Gen Z from performing at their maximum potential. Unaddressed employee stress and anxiety can result in increased turnover rates and lowered productivity. Encouraging work-life balance, short breaks throughout the day, and taking vacations will significantly help combat these stress levels. Emphasizing their mental health will reduce burnout and increase engagement and mindfulness.