Who is following Generation Y? Gen Z of Course
I recently attended the Society for Industrial and
Organizational Psychology’s(SIOP) annual conference
in San Diego and one of my colleagues, Lydia
Cillié-Schmidt, attended the American Society for
Training and Development’s
(ASTD) annual conference in Denver. As your
strategic business partners we believe that we should
be up-to-date with the latest research and trends to
ensure that we provide you with the best solutions.
One of the main trends we picked up at the ASTD
Conference is the desire to do more with less.
Companies have less time, less money, less people
and yet they have to sustain and thrive in future.
This is a perfect recipe for the stimulation of creativity and innovation and some organisations are role models
in this regard!
In this edition we will give you some more feedback on
the trends and issues we have identified at
these two conferences. We also provide a little more
information on the generation following Generation Y.
We know that you also have the challenge of doing
more with less and will assist you gladly in getting
those creative juices flowing!
There is still not one commonly accepted term, and according to the USA Today newspaper, there is still a competition to see who will get to coin the mutually accepted term for the generation who is starting to enter adulthood as from this year. However, this generation warrants a closer look. Generation Z (also known as Generation M (for multitasking), Generation C (for Connected Generation), the Ne t Generation, or the iGeneration) is a common name in the US and other Western nations for the group of people born between 1990 and 2002. This generation is currently growing up in the 2010’s decade, as children and younger teens, and is even according to some citations, entering adulthood as of 2012.
This generation has grown up in an age when computers and the Internet have always existed. In the US, of teens aged 13-18, 93 percent go online on a regular basis and 74 percent have broadband in their home. Over 70 percent of teens own a laptop, 69 percent own a portable MP3 player, and 63 percent own a gaming console. Technology is in the ir DNA, and it shows in the way they live, work and desire products. Generation Zers are a Do-It-Yourself generation. Cutting-edge technology and products that allow Gen Zers to customize to their personal tastes, like the iPhone, which Gen Z can constantly update, design and personalise, are attractive to these young consumers. An example is the explosive growth in the number of Apps available through the Apple App Store and the number of successful businesses that have been launched.
Gen Z is one of the most connected generations. However, connectedness has a dark side, contributing to a sedentary lifestyle and skyrocketing rates of obesity. ; This g eneration may live shorter, less healthy lives than their parents despite the medical advances of the last twenty years. In a time of shrinking family budgets, the cheapest food options remain the unhealthiest and the access to safe and attractive places for physical activity are limited for children living in poverty.
Even as Gen Z members are so highly connected, they also appear to be less inclined toward civic engagement than earlier generations when it comes to voting and to participating in their communities. This could lead to deficiencies in leadership, as fewer people choose to enter into civil service or run for elected office.
Coming into the job market in one of the hardest economic periods in recent memory, young people have been hit especially hard. Research shows that 54 percent of the Millennials in the US, now aged 18-34 want to start their own business rather than work for someone else.
Whether Gen Z enters the workplace as an entrepreneur or an employee, they will bring new traits and expect ations w ith them. Gen Z will favour jobs that have societal benefits, and they will strive to make an impact while maintaining a work-life balance foreign to their parents. They will expect a business culture replete with creative ideas and innovation, and they will demand options to work remotely and with flexible schedules.