What that means for the workplace

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Andrew Ellenberg is president of Rise Integrated Marketing, a management consulting firm. andrew@riseintegrated.com. Learn more! Click here.

Gen Z and millennials don’t buy what the establishment sells. They question assumptions and long-held beliefs that baby boomers readily accepted. From dodging the “mandatory” four-year college degree that could leave them with six-figure debt for decades to questioning the traditional roles of men and women, the next generation of leaders is reinventing the path to success as they redefine what it means to them.

And it’s not just that they do things differently; Gen Z and millennials are better equipped to succeed than their predecessors. They are more inclusive, open-minded and independent than any generation.

Young people in the workplace

Gen Z and millennials fearlessly blaze their own paths in their careers, whether they’re starting their own businesses or pursuing unconventional jobs at companies with unique cultures. Their values ​​and norms are less materialistic than previous generations. Financial compensation takes a backseat to happiness and fulfillment. Gen Z is the most diverse and tolerant generation in history, and millennials aren’t far behind.

traditional methods of communication do not resonate with this new generation of workers. We need to find creative ways to engage with them and appeal to their values ​​and aspirations. Older managers and executives may think they’re doing it wrong, but Generation Z and millennials are setting their own course. It would be good for us to listen to them and learn from them. Otherwise, we risk missing out on their talent and creativity.

Recruitment ads that lure the hook with generic clichés such as “generous compensation packages,” etc., have fallen on deaf ears. While everyone wants fair compensation and benefits such as health insurance, new generations are less likely to be guided by ‘the usual suspects’ such as expense accounts, travel reimbursements or company cars. What does make them enthusiastic is a sense of purpose. This generation wants to do work that matters. Its members value transparency, flexibility and collaboration.

This confident, open-minded and optimistic generation grew up with technology. The new hires are resourceful and resilient, always looking for better ways to get things done. They will not suffer from fools who lack the emotional intelligence to tune into their frequencies. When your senior managers kill off new ideas and initiatives, the next sound you hear is the revolving door as your new hires run.

New perspectives on education

You may need to adjust your job requirements to deal with a different new reality. Especially a lot of Gen Zs are drop the four-year training plan because they don’t believe it prepares them for their career and they worry about debt. Instead, many may opt for two-year community college programs that teach them marketable skills that they can use to land their dream job as quickly as possible. Employers should consider embracing community college degrees and certification programs that can help develop your people with the skills they need to excel in their roles without the expensive investment of a four-year degree.

Significant companies are beginning to see the value of hiring community college graduates and investing in programs to help them transition into the job market. Google is a leader in this field, partnering with 100 community colleges in the US to provide IT training.

Final Thoughts

This generation values ​​collaboration over competition. They are free of preconceptions about ‘how it’s always been done’. They believe that working together is more exciting than working alone. And they are always looking for ways to connect through social media, events and networking clubs.

To recruit, educate and develop this coveted demographic, hiring managers and professionals need to understand what drives them to tap their motivations and engage them emotionally. It is no longer enough to offer a competitive salary and benefits package. To attract and retain the best talent, employers need to understand the values ​​this group is passionate about, which is a employer who careswork that is meaningful and feels like they have an impact, and let them permeate your work culture.


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