Members of Gen Z bring many strengths and skills to the table, including their preference for collaboration. As the first true digital natives, this generation understands how social media can support interpersonal connections, learning, and workplace campaigns. As such, companies and organizations find they are successful when they design targeted approaches to provide Gen Z with the tools and leadership development opportunities they need to grow and shine. Here are a few points to consider.
As the largest and most diverse generation yet, Gen Z has a unique perspective and understanding of the world. This cohort of emerging leaders cares deeply for others, and they have a great appreciation for diversity and an inclusive workplace environment. In a recent article titled, The Future of Work Depends on Gen Z, Forbes notes that members of Gen Z are entering the workforce during a time of rising inflation, student debt, a looming recession, and uncommonly traumatic events. “Gen Z has been dealt a difficult hand, and it’s defining how they engage in work.”
Opportunities to Learn and Grow
Citing Glint’s 2021 Employee Well-being Report, Forbes also states that “having opportunities to learn and grow is the number one factor that defines an exceptional work environment.” “Implementing training and reskilling programs can benefit all generations of employees, including Gen Z, and increase retention overall.” Adding to the discussion, CNBC notes that, “As young workers search for stability and meaning when entering the working world, they’re changing their behaviors and mindsets to ‘recession-proof’ their futures.”
A Preference for Collaboration
It is typical that each generation gets tagged with a negative description or two as the group struggles to take their place in the workforce. A prevalent belief associated with Gen Z is that this generation is coddled, however, studies show this is far from true. According to Stanford-affiliated research published in January, 2022, “Gen Z are not ‘coddled.’ They are highly collaborative, self-reliant, and pragmatic.” Citing this study, Roberta Katz, a senior research scholar noted, “We expected the interviewees to respond with their favorite type of digital communication – e.g., text, email, chat group, DM, FaceTime, Skype, etc. – but instead nearly every single person said their favorite form of communication was in person.”
Social Media Skills
As true digital natives, the influence of Gen Z is expanding, According to McKinsey. “From the earliest youth, they have been exposed to the internet, to social networks, and to mobile systems. That context has produced a hypercognitive generation very comfortable with collecting and cross-referencing many sources of information and with integrating virtual and offline experiences.” Whether seamlessly navigating hybrid work or creating and interpreting trends, Gen Z is uniquely poised to utilize the power of social media to build brands, connect with customers, and position the companies they work for as thought leaders in their industries.
According to Forbes, “Companies that want to attract, retain, and engage young workers must reach across generations to prioritize human connection and meet Gen Z where they are at. As Gen Z workers continue to create ripples across the old ways of working, employers must continue to improve their work flexibility, mental health, diversity, and career growth opportunities so to meet the interests of these empowered and talented young workers.”
Tammy Dowley-Blackman Group, LLC believes that leadership is open to everyone, and we have an opportunity to invest in Gen Z early in their careers to ensure we have the leaders we need to manage complex issues and decision making. We are harnessing the energy and passion of Gen Z by providing curated in-person and virtual cohort learning and training, online courses, and group and individual coaching via tools designed at the intersection of needs and interests. We also offer a community to network with and support each next step of learning.
Tammy Dowley-Blackman Group, LLC is a certified National Supplier Development Council
Minority Business Enterprise (MBE), Small Business Administration (SBA) Woman Owned
Small Business (WOSB), and Women’s Business Enterprise Network Council (WBENC) woman-owned company. The company is comprised of a suite of brands, including TDB Group Strategic Advisory, a management consulting firm; Looking Forward Lab, a media content company focused on Gen Z, which partners with corporations and higher education systems to offer a full-service learning engagement model that delivers workforce development solutions; and Cooper + Lowe, an incubator for women interested in transitioning to entrepreneurship and thought leadership using the tools of a company that has successfully scaled.