Gen Z-ers bring a different mindset and vocabulary to the workplace, leading many companies to reevaluate their approach to labor. “What Gen Z wants is to do meaningful work with a sense of autonomy and flexibility and work-life balance and work with people who work collaboratively,” said Julie Lee, director of technology and mental health at Harvard Alumni for Mental Health. “During the time I entered the workforce, I didn’t feel empowered. I didn’t feel that I was able to ask for those things.”
Gen Z For Change in the Workforce Landscape
As more millennials enter the workforce, plenty of change and adaptation is taking place for Gen Z’ers and older generations. The Washington Post claims that these young people “born between 1997 and 2012 are more diverse, tolerant, educated, and socially committed than past generations, while making up one-fourth of the U.S. population.”
Gen Z-ers finding it difficult to adjust to their emerging lives after having grown up in turbulent times that included the World Trade Center bombing, wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, a Great Recession, and recently the global pandemic, racial issues, and political insurrection. These factors might be at play when it comes to data showing that Gen Z have faced more instability and higher levels of stress, poverty, and mental illnesses.
Youth from this generation are constantly striving to find a better work-life balance and aren’t afraid to ask what they want from their employers. In order to adapt, many take part-time work while building their own small businesses. When it comes to remote work, the majority prefer being hybrid after being cooped up in small apartments or living with their parents for so long.
Gen Z-ers also have more access to data, information, and tools when it comes to researching companies that they are interested in working for, and preparing themselves for the application process.
Most importantly, their perspective has shifted to hone in more holistic forms of stability that benefit their communities and sustainability for the earth and its climate.