When Millennials came into the workforce a majority of the older generations made such a fuss over their work habits. I wonder how they are going to feel about Generation Z, otherwise known as the iGeneration, Centennials, Post-Millennials, Generation Sensible and the Homeland Generation.
What Do We Know About Gen Z?
Generation Z is made up of individuals born between the years 1995 to 2012. According to Oxford Royale Academy, they are distinctive and different.
- Neo-digital Generation
While Millennials still had to contend with dial-up internet, Generation Z grew up with sleek smartphones in their hands. These digital natives grew up without having to exert the effort of mailing a letter to someone halfway across the world and waiting patiently for a reply via snail mail. While many of the older generations see electronics as a luxury, this generation sees it as a necessity.
- Generation Unsafe
They grew up in a world where school mass shootings are common, where terrorists can bomb large establishments at any time and where world leaders are always on the verge of a nuclear war. Living with this is the norm. Thus, they feel like conflict can erupt at home or overseas.
- Frugal Generation
This generation was also born a few years before or after the 2007 financial crisis that led to recession. Many Gen Zers may have memories of having their homes repossessed or of family members losing their jobs. This has molded them into frugal people who are more likely to collect coupons than Millennials. They are not as attracted to luxury brands compared to the older generations.
- Worried Entrepreneurs
Growing up in a world where they feel financially insecure, their outlook is more realistic than Millennials who we taught to dream big. They have dreams of becoming entrepreneurs, potentially never needing to answer to someone else. A lot of them are early starters as well.
- Health Is Wealth
More Gen Zers are conscious about what they put into their bodies. Many of them do not even drink alcohol or smoke, as they can hang out with their friends online and not have to go clubbing. Perhaps they have benefited from all the no smoking ads that they grew up seeing, which were created to help the older generations quit. Their being health-conscious might also be influenced by a family member’s decision to become vegan or engaged in some level of vegetarianism.
- Privacy Please
This is a generation of individuals who value their privacy so much more than the older generations, to an extent. While they might have public profiles on Instagram, these are carefully curated. Most of them are not as active on Facebook, preferring Snapchat instead. They prefer to share their minute to minute life in a Snapchat or Instagram story rather then post an old school status on Facebook. Sharing what they are doing right now, whether it’s cooking, taking the dog for a walk, working out, shopping, partying…it’s what they are used to seeing from all the celebs they follow.
Reaching Millennials vs. Reaching Generation Z
You might think that Generation Z and Millennials are pretty much the same. That is where you are wrong. Below are a few reasons you might not want to rehash your Millennial strategy on the newest generation in the workforce. The Content Strategist shares an interesting survey done by Deep Focus that will help you understand what you need to tweak marketing-wise to reach the youngest workforce generation.
Only 33% of Gen Z want brands to reach them through email, compared to 43% of Millennials. When it comes to social media, 34% of Gen Z and 29% of Millennials would like to be reached in that manner. A whopping 28% of the Gen Z population prefer online ads compared to just 16% of Millennials. You might also consider a Youtube channel, as this is the preferred website of this generation. If you’re wondering why you should care so much about creating a strategy to suit Gen Z, please keep in mind that they are 61 million strong in the USA alone. They were born and raised with cell phones and social media. That is there way to communicate and be seen, not through email.
Engaging Generation Z
Every company requires new blood to ensure that it lives on. With Gen Z being the newest to grace the workforce, you want to make sure they choose your company over your competition. Talent Blog recently published an article with helpful tips to attract the iGeneration.
- Independence Over Collaboration
While 88% of Millennials say they prefer collaborative work, the same cannot be said about Gen Z. If you have just splurged on open office space to cater to your Millennials, you might want to sit down before you continue reading this. Generation Z is less likely to want to collaborate. Gen Z Gurus, David and Jonah Stillman say that 35% of the iGeneration “would rather share socks than an office space.”
- Shorter Attention Spans
While early Millennials may have had to go to libraries to do research, Generation Z grew up with information from their smartphones. Naturally, this means they have a shorter attention span as they can sort through digital content and even source content faster. If a Millennial has a 12-second attention span, Generation Z has an 8-second attention span. So yes, you need to bring the “wow” factor in less than 8 seconds or you lose them. If it doesn’t immediately catch their attention, they have already scrolled down to the next source before the older generations have blinked.
- Consistency and Authenticity
Generation Z lives on many social media platforms. They adore social media and engage well with online messaging. Brand yourself by being on more than just one social media profile and make sure your story is consistent. If Millennials use 3 screens on average, the new breed uses 5 screens. This generation has no problem being seen online. One quick search will bring up their Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Tumblr, just to name a few. This is how they want to be found and noticed.
Each generation imagines their ideal workplace differently and I have yet to come across a company that is the complete gold standard for all of the workplace generations. However, I believe certain changes will become necessary as we prepare for the coming generations. Recruiting is an art, fluid and versatile, or it should be. Retention, now that is something out of a recruitment firm’s control. That aspect rests heavily on the company.
Continental Search recruits for feed manufacturers, their suppliers and integrated food companies across the US and Canada. Our team of 6 recruiters and 3 researchers have over 80 years of combined experience recruiting. For more recruiting tips and information on us, visit www.continentalsearch.com or call (888) 276-6789.