The post-digital generation, or Generation Z as they are commonly known, were born between the mid-1990s and 2010. Unlike the baby boomers, this generation grew up through trying financial times and a lack of stability.
Becoming wealthy and producing stability for themselves and the rest of the world is what Gen Z are motivated by.In order for them to do this, technology will be a vital part of how employees will work and live within the future of the workplace.
Technologies encourage the user to work individually, and because of this, it’s unclear how this generation will cope when it comes to team building exercises. Together with Impact International, specializes in team development, we explore the differences between how Gen Z feel towards teamwork and the workplace within a digital landscape, compared to past generations who relied on face-to-face communication.
A different type of worker for a new generation
The baby boomers of the 1950s preferred to stay in what is classed as a job for life; Gen Z prefers to learn as they go, learn new skills and take their new skills elsewhere if necessary.By furthering their specific interests within the workplace, this generation learns by focusing in on online courses, online books, articles, videos and other digital mediums to learn and progress as they go.
As a result of this willingness to learn new skills, Gen Z is deemed more likely to be able to cope with rapid changes, as well as being able to process new information quickly.
Are they team players?
How does Gen Z relate to team-building when they are so focused on their own development and learning new skills? Millennials are interconnected, using social media as a platform to always keep in touch with other people. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re always ready to engage in team building in the traditional sense.
As a more appropriate description, team-orientated individuals are a more apt portrayal of how this generation interact and work with one another.
Contributing towards a team initiative with their own individual tasks, Gen Z can retain their individuality while contributing towards something greater than their own workload. This is unlike workers of the past, who would usually work together in less isolating environments so that a job was completed.
When responsibility is spread over a number of individuals within horizontal management structures, workers can recognize the importance of their contributions. However, Gen Z also recognizes that their contributions take time and effort to make an impact.
Even though they are less team-orientated, Gen Z understands the importance of workplace culture and their contributions towards this culture.79% of millennials feel that culture-building activities in the workplace are vital when it comes to their progression. However, only 41% of baby boomers aged 51-60 felt the same, which suggests that although Gen Z wants to be individuals, their identity is linked to the work that they do every day.
Impact on the workplace
For the workplace to thrive in the future, the workplace in general needs to be trusting on Gen Z and the new working practices they bring to the table. This is so their creativity is able to stand on their own two feet. If employees within this demographic feel as though they aren’t able to innovate and progress, this will lead to their performance being stifled in the workplace – contributing to a lack and motivation, or an attempt to leave the organization.
Based on their individual merits, by allowing them to progress into the future of management, workplace managers of today are slowly coming round to the idea that employees of the future need to be ready for any working situation that comes their way.