Multiple new surveys show that the Zoomer generation is difficult to work with, easily offended, lacks motivation, has poor communication skills, and acts entitled—but many are also eager to bring new ideas to the workplace and have useful technical skills.
- A recent ResumeBuilder.com corporate survey found that 74% of managers found Gen Z employees harder to employ than older generations.
- An April Pollfish survey finds that half of employers find Gen Z the most difficult group to work with, and two-thirds say they are more likely to fire Gen Z employees than older employees.
- Gallup’s Generation Disconnected report shows that Gen Z is more likely than previous generations to be disengaged and burnout from stress.
- A McKinsey study found Gen Z is more restless at work and likelier to report health issues and hostile work environments.
- Recent Deloitte research suggests that Gen Z has a completely different work ethic than its predecessors, prioritizing empathy and mental health more than their bosses, The Hill reports.
It is no secret that the younger generations have been in conflict with older generations for decades. The millennial generation previously garnered a reputation for being lazy, entitled, and selfish but has largely been embraced into the workforce over time, with many of the current managerial classes coming from that generation.
Gen Z, having grown up during the 2008 recession and entered the workforce during COVID-19, faces many unique challenges that have made it difficult for employers to connect with their young employees. Younger generations have different working habits and communicate in different ways. They do not prioritize work as an important part of life and have led to the “Quiet Quitting” and “Great Resignation” phenomena as a result.
“They think they’re better than you, smarter than you, more capable than you, and they will tell you to your face. I’ve butted heads more than once with a Gen Z employee. Since our company is online-based, they think they know everything about the digital world and that they can teach me,” says SGK Global Shipping Services head of human resources Akpan Ukeme.
While the new generations are creating different demands for hiring managers, human resources, and managers to grapple with, Gen Z does offer advantages that prior generations do not have. Young people are more adaptable, tech-literate, and eager to share new ideas in the workplace. Managers who can learn to take advantage of these traits can make the most out of an evolving workforce.
“Compared to other generations, I find Gen Z to be highly innovative and adaptable. They are not afraid to challenge the status quo and bring new ideas to the table. They also value authenticity and transparency and expect companies to be socially responsible and ethical. While they are proficient in using digital communication tools, they may lack some of the interpersonal skills required for face-to-face interactions,” Hairbro marketing director Adam Garfield tells The Hill.