Spilling the tea on the problems with Gen Z in the workplace

Gen Z employee with a hijab in a bright workplace

Problems to anticipate when hiring Gen Z employees

No matter your industry, you’re going to be seeing lots more Gen Z workers fill the ranks in the next few years.

This generation – my generation – is fresh out of education and ready to get your job offers. But before you begin dishing them out, it’s best to take a second to understand the problems that Gen Z people could bring to your workplace.

Spoiler alert: there are also some amazing benefits to employing us too!

What is Gen Z?

Gen Z covers the 72 million people born between 1997 and 2012. We grew up with technology – whether it was the family computer or a tablet permanently glued to our hands. But we didn’t just use it to play Barbie dress up games – although those were the highlight of my childhood.

We used this tech to educate ourselves from a young age. That’s why so many of us are passionate about big issues like diversity and climate change.

So if you want to win the best Gen Z candidates, you’ll need to show similar passions. Young job hunters are on the lookout for truly diverse, innovative companies to work for that align with our morals. In fact, these days job hunters value exciting and meaningful work over salary.

We’re the generation that grew up in the aftermath of the great recession of 2008 and now we’re graduating into the Covid-19 recession of the early 2020s. So we have lots of resilience and adaptability to offer.

The oldest Gen Z are looking for junior roles in companies just like yours – you might have even employed one or two already!

The problems with Gen Z in the workplace

We are used to remote working

Lots of us Gen Z have started our careers working from home during the pandemic, so you could say that we’re used to it. Some of us might even want to work this way for the rest of our lives.

So if you’re thinking about moving back to the office, you might find some resistance.

And once you eventually manage to bribe us to come into the office, we might take a while to adjust. The distractions and noise of office work can be hard to tune out for those that have never experienced it.

It could also take a while to learn office etiquette, so you could find us interrupting co-workers or even – shock horror – not offering everyone a hot drink when we make one! Sorry!

Reports of boredom

Let’s face it, work is often boring, especially in junior roles. There’s always lots of admin, numbers to consider and things to plan… and this just doesn’t spark excitement.

It can be hard to adjust to working after spending years in university. When you get a degree, you’re constantly working on something new. You have grades that clearly measure your success and always know that there’s a final exam or essay ahead.

At work all of these things to strive for are gone. Sure we all want a promotion or raise, but lots of work stays the same for months on end. This can feel monotonous and even boring.

What’s the solution? Having a clear training programme complete with promotion opportunities and realistic goals would be a great way to help your hires stay focused and driven.

Mental health challenges

Perhaps Gen Z are the snowflake generation… or maybe we just learned to talk about how we feel.

Either way, Gen Z love talking about mental health and are looking for managers that feel the same.

Whether your company has a mental health day policy or benefits like meditation apps and therapy discounts, it will certainly catch our attention.

Gen Z girls at a protest for climate change. Sign reads: we're missing our lessons so we can teach you one.

The bonuses of having Gen Z in the workplace

We’re full of ideas

When you employ young talent, you’ll get to benefit from their fresh perspective. Your Gen Z employees will be technologically savvy, social media loving hires with lots of new ideas.

Fresh out of university, we’re used to remote work, constant learning and aiming high with our goals.

We can teach ourselves new skills for work while learning the latest TikTok dance and teaching you the lingo you need to connect with your Gen Z audience. And that’s on multitasking 💅

We’re open to change

Covid-19 taught us all lots of things, and while some of us learned about working from home, loneliness and misinformation, Gen Z have had it particularly rough.

In the last year alone I’ve moved between my university city and hometown five times. Each time I brought work with me, setting up study stations to finish my degree and part-time job before installing two screens in different houses for my permanent job.

What I’m trying to say is that after the pandemic lots of Gen Z will have gone through a similar thing. So now we’re used to uprooting ourselves, making changes and being proactive.

We’ll help you stay current

There are around 72 million people classed as Gen Z, so ignoring us isn’t going to work. If you can appeal to our interests, you’ll find it much easier to hire and even sell depending on your target audience.

So paying attention to things like diversity, inclusion and climate change is a great way to stay current. A fair, sustainable company will always win out in our minds!

Whether you need to re-think your packaging, hiring or company culture, Gen Z will be invaluable for future-proofing your company.

If you look at all of the problems Gen Z can bring to the workplace and compare them to the bonuses, I think you’ll agree that it’s worth taking a chance and hiring a youngster! You’ll just need to attract them to your company first…

About post author

Hi, I'm Daisy. I'm using my passion for writing to work with DigitalGrads on their content and social media campaigns.
Posted in Managing Juniors