From “Quiet Quitting” to “Act your Wage”, we have all heard the new slang that Gen Z has brought to the workforce since they graduated. With their confident attitude and trendy clothes, this powerhouse generation is transforming how many of us work. But what makes them so different to their predecessors, the humble, stressed, burnt-out millennial? Everything from the economic circumstances during their childhood to the fact that they have studied, socialised and worked from home has made this generation the cool younger sister of the workplace.
Thanks to Covid, the majority of Gen Z began or finished their college experience during lockdown. They have studied at home, attended lectures from their bed and completed group projects from the comfort of their couch. Having proved that they can thrive and perform from their own home, they don’t see the need or the merit in turning up to the office 5 days a week. Working from home comes naturally to them, so many are demanding fully remote roles.
While many of us still feel that nagging sense of panic surrounding unemployment or economic downturn, many Gen Z’ers barely remember the Recession. Whereas other generations are guilty of working late and going that extra mile for fear of losing their job – Gen Z know how to fulfil the job description without burning themselves out. By working within their core hours and avoiding extra, non-essential tasks, they have more energy for the important work and are focusing better on their primary tasks. They call it “quiet quitting”; we call it passive performance.
Much like their millennial counterparts, Gen Z employees are extremely well-educated and have big career ambitions. Gen Z uses this to their advantage, demanding flexible working and extra benefits in exchange for their in-demand skills. They know about the talent shortage, and they are not afraid to use it to their advantage. While many millennials are still struggling to enter the next tax bracket thanks to the eye-wateringly low salaries they accepted in the past, Gen Z is making sure they start on the right foot.
Gen Z has the healthiest attitude towards the mental health of any generation to date, and they are not willing to compromise. Flexible work schedules, mental health days, generous annual leave allowances, and an actively involved wellness team are the bare minimum companies can offer this woke generation. No longer swayed by vague benefits such as “competitive salary” or “dynamic work environment”, Gen Z are putting their mental health first. Companies would do well to take note;- a mentally zen employee is a good employee.
Free from preconceptions about how things have been done in the past, Gen Z’ers want to carve their own career path. More often than not, this means regularly changing jobs in search of better benefits, increased flexibility, or more responsibility. Members of the Gen Z generation are switching jobs almost yearly, which is nearly twice as often as the rest of us. Voting with their feet, they follow the best opportunities. They cleverly see their jobs for what they are, a business transaction, and don’t harbour guilt over leaving managers or teams behind if it means career progression. Don’t be so sensitive, it’s just business.
Gen-Z workers are bringing some fresh ideas and a different approach to the modern-day workforce. Watching the work environment change for the better is exciting; Generation Z seem to be creating a more forward-thinking perspective on employment.