At ‘The 2019 RCSA International Conference’ we heard from the extraordinary Alexia Hilbertidou (19-years-old), the founder and CEO of GirlBoss NZ – a 10,500 strong army of young women. Alexia presented surprising insights into the minds of Gen Z (10-22-year old). She described how they have been impacted by their upbringing, plus ways in which we can support this next generation of young workers & TRY to keep up with them.
Here’s the surprise… GenZers share generational DNA with their grandparents and great-grandparents, the Silent generation that came of age in the wake of World War II. The audience asked ourselves, how do the 21st-century babies, born with iPhones in their hands, with attention spans of 8 seconds, Gen Z, have the same generational personality as the hardworking, sensible, loyal Silent generation??? Here’s what we learnt.
A ”new silent generation” is emerging for those born during the early 2000s, since like their great grandparents in the silent generation, their childhood is also deemed to be marked by war and economic recession. Their young minds saw/or see very risky worlds. In response, they become more risk adverse. Rates of drinking, drug use and pregnancy are low among Zs. They tend to play it safe. They are home bodies (Netflix binges), save their money and browse rather than buy.
They are optimistic – ‘Glass half full’. The future looked bright to Silents. They’d seen depression and war and had come through it. We’re already seeing that same resiliency in Gen Z, a lack of cynicism and a hopefulness whose time has come again. They have experienced pain and are ready for the new awakening.
Other take-outs, GenZ – they solve problems themselves rather than asking for help, they are fiercely competitive, due to the ‘reality’ entertainment they are raised on. Bachelor, X-factor, The Voice, Australia’s Got Talent, Master Chef and so on. They are boycotting formal education and opting for self-teaching or starting their own businesses to support themselves.
Gen Z – resilient, competitive, problem-solvers, wanting to save their own money and make the world a better place. They want work, and they are looking for financial security. They realise living at home for free is not an option or long-term strategy. Now armed with technology and the ability to mobilize quickly Gen Z are not to be ignored. We, at Peninsula Personnel, are excited to be a conduit for the future leaders heading into the new world of work #loveyourwork.