A new workforce generation is here, one who is raised on a completely different set of values, ethics, and morals. Along with the evolution of technology and social media, Gen Z has taken it upon themselves to shatter the status quo and establish distinct ideals in more than just their personal lives.
Making up about 24% of the current global workforce, this unapologetically vocal and digital generation is entering work with a different set of expectations. That begs the question: how do we manage and motivate Gen Z employees?
Though every generation is unique, the rapid rise in technology has further exacerbated the generational gap between Gen Z and others. From memes to TikTok and everything in between, the nuances that make Gen Z challenging to connect with indeed translate into the workplace. This generation that uses non-traditional methods of communicating and living also requires non-traditional methods of management. Good leadership starts with a more robust and in-depth understanding of Gen Z and its communication, trust, and growth values.
Communication styles vary from person to person. To Gen Z, good communication goes beyond a phone call or text message and into radical transparency. Opening up different communication lines allows for a safe space to ask questions, learn, and grow. That enables Gen Z to feel more comfortable, which fortifies their personal and professional growth.
As the social media generation, Gen Z needs community and trust.
Because Gen Z is socially branded as being children, they are often overlooked and undermined. Motivation and encouragement are all the more critical in building and maintaining a sense of trust with Gen Z -- enabling them to gain the confidence they need to excel. As a manager, providing oneself as a resource for any questions or concerns that may arise will boost Gen Z’s confidence in the workplace.
As digital natives, Gen Z’s lives have been broadcasted for the world to see. This transparency has allowed their voices to be amplified -- leading to a rise in “cancel culture.” Though cancel culture can be toxic, Gen Z’s need for accountability and growth stems from prioritizing values at work.
Facilitating a type of environment where growth is a priority allows Gen Z to learn from its mistakes and create a growth culture. Ultimately, the goal is for Gen Z to adapt, pivot, then utilize the knowledge they gain to grow.
By knowing what motivates Gen Z employees, managers can better manage and retain this amazing young generation of talent.
About The Author
Lomit Patel is the Senior Vice President of Growth at IMVU. Before IMVU, Lomit managed growth at early-stage startups, including Roku (IPO), TrustedID (acquired by Equifax), Texture (acquired. by Apple), and EarthLink. Lomit is a public speaker, author, advisor, and recognized as a Mobile Hero by Liftoff. Lomit’s book Lean AI, which is part of Eric Ries’ best-selling “The Lean Startup” series, is now available at Amazon.