Generation Z refers to the group of people born between the years 1997 and 2015. In 2021, their ages range from the age of six to 24 years old. This means that there are members of this generation that are currently entering the work environment, so how to deal with gen z in the workplace?
A differentiating trait of this generation is that they were raised in the age of social media and the internet. They are often referred to as technology or social media addicts. Many criticize them for anti-social behavior.
This can have a notable impact on the work environment, as members of this generation struggle to adapt to working as members of a team, and workers who are members of other generations adapt to having generation Z as part of the team.
Here is a comprehensive guide on how to deal with gen Z in the workplace.
The Defining Generation Z in the Workplace
Because gen Z entered the working world in 2019, data on their behavior in the workplace is limited. However, early research depicts gen Z as highly educated, independent, and hardworking individuals.
They tend to be motivated by monetary incentives, and job stability due to the financial challenges many have faced growing up. As one of the most ethnically diverse generations, gen Z is concerned with racial and gender equality in the workplace. They want to work for establishments that uphold these ideals.
One of the greatest strengths of gen Z is their ability to multitask. They are accustomed to switching between applications regularly, switching between tasks faster than previous generations.
A surprising thing to note is that despite their constant reliance on technology, gen Z tends to prefer physical communication, which indicates that employers could begin to see a shift towards traditional means of communication rather than digital alternatives.
Now that we understand gen Z a little better, we can discuss managing generation Z in the workplace and ways on how to deal with gen z in the workplace.
Managing Generation Z in the Workplace
Managers have had to rethink their approach to the workplace as the working model changes considering the growing pandemic. Companies are now adopting a hybrid work model that involves employees working remotely, and returning to the office only when necessary.
Here are five ways you can better manage your generation Z workforce.
1. Team Collaboration
Because gen Z prefers communicating face-to-face, it is important to pay special attention to team interaction. Ensure that your gen Z workers have different ways of communicating both in person and through digital means.
Autonomous has a communication tool called Jam to allow your hybrid workforce to communicate efficiently through digital means while working remotely. Jam lets you click to talk, removing the fuss from online communication.
Encourage face-to-face interactions among employees through video calls and meetings in the office. Aim to provide regular feedback, and performance reviews to keep your gen Z workers happy.
2. Inclusion and Diversity
Generation Z is the most ethnically diverse generation yet, and they are concerned with matters of equality. If you want to keep your gen Z workers happy, you need to focus on gender and racial equality in the working environment.
Gen Z workers are more likely to remain in a company that promotes equality and treats its employees the same, regardless of gender, race, or age. This applies especially to the process of promotions. Promoting employees unfairly could cause your gen Z workers to leave.
3. Help Generation Z Manage Stress Levels
To keep gen Z happy and productive, it is important to help them manage their stress levels. Finances, work, and issues with job stability are some of the biggest stressors in the lives of gen Z employees.
If care is not taken to properly manage the stress levels of these employees, it could lead to reduced productivity, higher healthcare costs, poor performance, and an increase in sick days among members of your team.
Employing a hybrid work model is a great way to mitigate such issues, as it allows employees to work in the comfort of their own homes. Studies have shown that this model increases productivity and the overall mood of employees.
In addition to this, encourage your workforce to take time off to destress. Avoid allowing them to work late into the night, as a lack of sleep can contribute to high levels of stress.
4. Listen to Your Employees
Generation Z workers have just entered the workforce. This means that they are new to the working world. Many leave jobs because they feel like they are being ignored, treated indifferently, or not being nurtured in the workplace by older generations.
How to deal with gen z in the workplace to avoid losing your gen Z employees, ensure that they are heard. Invite them to meetings and listen to their ideas. Sometimes it helps to look at something through new eyes, and members of this highly educated generation can help you come up with fantastic new ideas and solve problems.
5. New Innovative Technology
This generation does not remember a time before the internet, Wi-Fi, smartphones, and social media. To keep them engaged in the workplace, you must embrace technology. This includes the use of excellent communication and instant messaging tools, such as Jam, to make team interaction easy and appealing to members of generation Z.
Wi-Fi that is sluggish, or software that does not work only frustrates gen Z. Hybrid Office software by Autonomous is another great tool to help manage a hybrid workforce that includes members of generation Z. It helps you maintain an effortless booking system, and allows employees to self-manage, something that appeals greatly to this generation.
Generation Z is now beginning to enter the workforce. While employers and managers have adapted completely to deal with millennials in the workplace, there is now a need to shift practices to accommodate this generation.
How to deal with gen z in the workplace? By listening to their ideas to make them feel valued, embracing the technology they grew up utilizing, collaborating effectively, promoting equality, and helping to manage stress levels, you can effectively manage generation Z in the workplace.
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