Generation Z (Gen Z) represents the future of business, and understanding their preferences can help organisations build a thriving workforce. This generation is driving workplace change that reflects social changes – but in what direction is that change heading?
Recently, at the inaugural ICMS Employability Symposium, a panel of industry leaders and a representative from the Gen Z generation gathered to discuss what Gen Z is looking for in a workplace culture.
The panel featured:
Regardless of the generation, workplace challenges will always persist. However, Gen Z offers unique qualities that make them stand out as great employees.
This digital generation often embody a growth mindset, which is highly desirable for companies aiming to innovate and adapt to a rapidly changing world. They generally don’t shy away from looking online for training when faced with learning a new skill. They are comfortable using platforms like TikTok and YouTube to teach themselves key skills. They build their ‘soft skills’ by listening to podcasts and following their favourite influencer mentors on social media. They consume news and stay-up-to date on industry trends in the same way.
Additionally, many Gen Z’s pursue side gigs, showcasing their entrepreneurial spirit.
In the ever-evolving landscape of the modern workplace, one thing remains constant: the need to engage and retain talent.
To create a workplace culture that Gen Z craves, consider the following factors:
According to Ben Hancock, a Gen Z intern, a great workplace should feel comfortable, “almost like a home”.
He emphasised that company culture is often more important than a high salary.
Gen Z is actively reshaping the business landscape. They readily embrace AI, share their skills, hold managers and companies to higher standards, and prioritise continuous learning.
Their consumer behaviour is influenced by ethics and corporate responsibility, making them a driving force for change.
Panelists shared valuable advice for Gen Z:
Vernon Cheung: “Don’t be afraid; go with your gut. It’s okay to embrace your passion.”
Stuart Martin: “Keep your hobbies and interests alive beyond work; you never know where they could lead.”
Elizabeth Picone: “Skills are transferable; you never know when you will need them.”
Networking was also highlighted as crucial, as you never know when your path might cross with someone who can open new opportunities.
Creating a workplace culture that Gen Z wants to be part of involves embracing their unique qualities, understanding their challenges, and aligning with their values.
Gen Z is not just the workforce of the future; they are actively shaping it.
By heeding their preferences and insights, organisations can build environments where both Gen Z and the company thrive together.
For more information on the ICMS First Annual Employability Symposium, click here.
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