What are some characteristics of Gen Z.

Generation Z: Who is “Gen Z” and how is it changing the world of work?

Everyone is currently talking about Generation Y. About the fact that they are “lazy”, “difficult” or simply “different” from all previous generations. Employers were taken by surprise by the changes that Generation Y is bringing to the world of work. You will need a long time to finally arrive in the "new age of Generation Y". The only problem is that their successors, “Generation Z”, will soon be entering the job market. And then?

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1. "Generation Z" - Who or what comes after Generation Y?
2. Is Generation Z just as “difficult” as Generation Y?
3. So what is it really like, this "Generation Z"?
4. And how does “Gen Z” see itself?

"Generation Z" - Who or what comes after Generation Y?

"Generation Z" or "Gen Z" refers to those born between 2000 and 2010. The "Gen Z" is currently still in childhood to adolescence. This explains why the world of work has so far mainly discussed the somewhat older "Generation Y", who are currently entering the labor market as young professionals. But a simple calculation quickly makes it clear: The time of Generation Z is coming - and fast. Your eldest representatives will soon be of legal age and those who opt for an apprenticeship instead of studying may already be in the middle of their professional life.

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While employers have not even (optimally) adjusted to the new requirements of Generation Y, their successors from “Gen Z” are already in the starting blocks. It is far from too early to ask the question: What is the future of the working world with Generation Z?

Is Generation Z just as “difficult” as Generation Y?

Generation Y is seen by employers as “lazy”, “demanding” and “difficult”. It relies on values ​​other than the typical German virtues called diligence and discipline. She wants a good work-life balance, a good work-life balance, personal responsibility, personal freedom, flexible work models, meaning in her job and and and ...

Reading tip: "Mood of upheaval: How Generation Y is changing the world of work"

So can employers in Generation Z again hope for “simpler” employees? A matter of opinion! In many respects, Generation Y and Generation Z are of course similar. After all, the younger generation always grows up under the influence of the older generation. They also share another formative influence: digital media. The worldview of the "Gen Z" was strongly influenced by television, the Internet, smartphones and the like. Social networks, Web 2.0 and digital work - all of this was a matter of course for Generation Z from an early age and of course has left its mark. But which?

So what is it really like, this "Generation Z"?

This question is of course of concern to many employers at the moment and has therefore been examined more closely by the current “Celepedia Youth Study # 2” - with surprising results: Yes, Generation Z is similar to Generation Y in many ways, but it seems much more traditional and sensible. The classic home of one's own, a stable family and marriage, a solid education, a secure job - this is what Generation Z longs for and thus ties back to the traditional values ​​of their parents' generation, the so-called "Generation X".

Nevertheless, some characteristics that we are very familiar with from Generation Y cannot be denied: For Generation Z, too, the top priority is not work, a steep career or financial wealth, but rather Time for the family, personal freedom, self-fulfillment and simply the fun of life. That doesn't sound like employees who completely sacrifice themselves for their job - to the point of burnout or even karoshi - that doesn't sound (anymore) either.

Reading tip: "Karoshi - first work, then death"

Sociologists consider the following characteristics to be "typical" for Generation Z:

  • optimistic view of the future
  • Serenity regarding career, job change & Co
  • Striving for intangibles
  • Finding meaning in work
  • (also) professional use of social networks
  • Cosmopolitanism
  • Fear of (gender) discrimination
  • Job has to match personality
  • Desire for personal development - also at work
  • Looking for (professional) independence

Reading tip: "Study: Generation Y longs for independence"

And how does “Gen Z” see itself?

But who better to describe the “spirit” of a generation than yourself? For sociologists, it is not only the external assessment that is exciting, but also Generation Z's view of their special features:


You can find more statistics at Statista

So it remains exciting to see to what extent Generation Z will ultimately differ from its predecessors, Generation Y, and whether or when the employers will finally manage to adapt to the demands of the new, "difficult" career starters. Because while Generation Y has already fully arrived in the labor market and Generation Z is already moving up, many employers are still operating in the rigid and outdated structures and mindsets of the baby boomers or Generation X.

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How do you rate Generation Z? What innovations will it bring for the labor market or will it simply follow in the footsteps of Generation Y? When and how can employers finally adapt to the changes in mentality, wishes and needs of the younger generations? We look forward to your contribution on the topic in the comments!

Photo credit: Nadia Snopek / Shutterstock.com

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