viewing the world through gen z lenses….

Working for a public high school has taught me some valuable lessons; unique in multiple ways but because they couldn’t have come from anywhere else. I work and live open minded and progressive. I am an advocate for the future, also because I want to understand.

Why is knowing the characteristics of those born mid 1990’s to mid 2000’s important for the world to know?

It took patience, baby steps to build relationships with high school students. Even though I had years of past experiences from those teetering-on-the-verge of retirement Baby Boomers to Gen X’s and millennials all on a daily basis while working in big corporate America. There was always something to learn. I am curious about visions, need connection and have always been inspired by views of all generations.

Its about the future and as we all know time never stands still…having an understanding mind set always beats agitation . Instead of dismissing the behavior, making a snarky comment, eye rolling and pointing a finger at ‘defiant’ youth, take time to understand them.

Guranteed it will make everyday better when you can communicate and you willingly try seeing through different lenses.

Five things you can expect from our next generation making their debut into the work force; those either those just post graduation or still learning from junior high and high school.

  1. Gen Z’s are born into technology; it has always been part of their lives; 95% of gen Z’s will always have instant access to a cell phone. They will need to learn to just say no and put the phone down to build the human connection.
  2. ‘Entrepreneur’ is their buzz word; and why? because the computer makes that possible and very low cost for multitudes of opportunities; college is a monumental expense, taxing amount of focus in a ‘ tech-instant world’ and creates long term debt. They also worry about their future financial security. For many it’s a real dilemma.
  3. This generation is the single most openly diverse-thinking of any in history. They are accepting of belief systems, ethnicity, background, sexual preference and are totally open about gender.
  4. Born into a residual recessionary economy , Gen-Z’s are far more frugal than their predecessors, the millennials and less inclined for lavish lifestyles. However, the other extreme is the tendency to be motivated by money; a dangling carrot.
  5. Competition is a much bigger deal to Gen-Z’s. Primarily due to the fact that the fast pace of progression and the changing world is constant competitive pressure . There is the need to keep up with all that is happening and Gen Z’s don’t want to be left behind.

Acceptance and the willingness to adapt is the good news with Z’s. We all need to be willing to open the windows and doors to change and appreciate what each generation can do …but ultimately we all need to work harder at collaboration regardless of the gen.

Working to better understand and build relationships with our youth is well worth the time ..take a Gen Z to lunch (ask them to turn off their phone) and have a conversation…it will be appreciated…

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