Generation Z is “The Change Generation,” because all of the recent global events increase their desire to make a difference in their future careers – and it also exacerbates their need for more “mental health support” from their employers, according to Lovell Corp.’s “2017 Change Generation Report: How Millennials and Generation Z Are Redefining Work.”
In partnership with the University of Guelph, Lovell Corp. surveyed more than 2,000 young people between the ages of 14 and 36 years-old across Canada. The survey found that while millennials (born between 1980 and 1993) seek jobs that provide stability, convenience and balance, Gen Z (born 1994 or after) is more readily concerned with fueling their passions and taking pride in the work they do.
“We can describe millennials as driven by growth and lifestyle, and Generation Z as driven by growth and passion,” the authors write. “For the first time, we see a generation prioritizing purpose in their work.”
There’s also a difference in what types of support each generation wants from employers. Millennials place the greatest emphasis on employability supports such as education, training, and career support, whereas Gen Z seeks greater mental health supports.
“With rising rates of anxiety and depression among youth, the emphasis placed on mental health by Generation Z suggests that the tough labor market and precarious school-to-work transition is taking its toll on young professionals,” the authors write. “Offering added personal supports to help young professionals transition to new positions, cope with stress and ultimately excel in their roles will help foster better retention and performance.”
Part of this need is being driven by formative events around the world that have left “an indelible imprint” on them, according to the report. But while events have caused a certain amount of stress and anxiety, it has also pushed these generations further to make a difference in their careers.
“Both millennials and Gen Z have been raised in times of political strife and global crisis, sparking a strong aspiration for equality and inclusion,” the authors write. “Young professionals are bringing these motivations to the workplace and in doing so reshaping businesses to prioritize diversity, inclusion and gender equality.”
When asked what career success means to them, both generations rated financial security as the most important factor, which can be attributed to high rates of youth unemployment, competitive job market, and career uncertainty that lingers in the current economy for many young professionals, according to the report.
Next on the list is the importance of workplace culture and inclusivity.
“A notable difference between the two generations was Generation Z’s stronger inclination to consider positive work relationships and impact as a determinant of their career success,” the authors write.
If employers want to retain younger workers, both generations want organizations to provide job security, build a strong employer brand for ethics and social responsibility, and take work-life balance seriously.
“Born with the same innate desire to have purpose, Generation Z seek meaningful work that aligns with their passion and will create impact,” the authors write. “Having witnessed the employment struggles of millennials however, Gen Z exhibits caution and prioritizes their personal growth and success.”
Employers that understand the underlying career motivations of each generation will be better able to both attract and retain workers, the authors conclude. “This is a generation that knows what they want and are driven to seize opportunities to step up their game to achieve it."