The Work Expectations of Generations Y and Z

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Generation Z is more entrepreneurial and less motivated by money than Generation Y, according to a recent report from Millennial Branding and Randstad.

The report was based on data from a survey of 1,005 members of Generation Z (age 16-20) and 1,016 members of Generation Y (age 21-32). Respondents came from the United States, Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, India, South Africa, Sweden, Turkey, and the United Kingdom.

Some 17% of respondents from Generation Z want to start a business and hire others someday, compared with 11% of respondents from Generation Y, the survey found.

Moreover, only 28% of Generation Z say money would motivate them to work harder and stay with their employer longer, as opposed to 42% of Generation Y.

Below, additional key findings from the report.

How They View Themselves (and the Other Generation)

  • Asked to associate certain stereotypes with their peers, both generations say their own group is creative, open-minded, and intelligent.
  • However, asked to rate stereotypes of the other generation, the groups differ. In particular, 45% of Generation Y respondents view Generation Z as lazy.

Communication

  • 51% of Generation Z respondents say they prefer in-person communication with managers as opposed to emailing (16%) or instant messaging (11%). The same applies to Generation Y: 52% prefer in-person communication.
  • Few members of both generations say technology enhances personal relationships with coworkers (13% of Gen Z; 14% of Gen Y).

Work Environment

  • 66% of Generation Y respondents say they like to multitask, compared with 54% of Generation Z.
  • 68% of Generation Y respondents like working in a fast-paced environment, compared with 59% of Generation Z.
  • Both state a strong preference for being hands-on with projects (76% of Gen Z; 81% of Gen Y).
  • Generation Z and Generation Y both see a corporate office space as their top work environment; however, Generation Y (45%) has greater preference for a traditional office than Generation Z (28%).
  • Both generations’ second choice of work location is a co-working space that operates independently of an employer (27% of Gen Z; 26% of Gen Y).

Leadership Qualities

  • 52% of respondents from both Generation Z and Generation Y say honesty is the most important quality for being a good leader.
  • The generations also agree that after honesty, leaders should exhibit a solid vision (34% of Gen Z; 35% of Gen Y) and good communication skills (32% of Gen Z; 34% of Gen Y).
  • Generation Z (61%) has stronger desire for managers to listen to their ideas and value their opinions than does Generation Y (56%).
  • Generation Y (58%) has a stronger desire for managers to allow them to work independently than does Generation Z (46%).

About the research: The report was based on data from a survey of 1,005 members of Generation Z (age 16-20) and 1,016 members of Generation Y (age 21-32). Respondents came from the United States, Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, India, South Africa, Sweden, Turkey, and the United Kingdom.

Ayaz Nanji is a digital strategy and content consultant. He is also a research writer for MarketingProfs. His experience includes working as a strategist and producer of digital content for Google/YouTube, the Travel Channel, and AOL.

LinkedIn: Ayaz Nanji

Twitter: @ayaznanji

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