The Difference Between Gen Z and Millennials in the Workplace

By Lisa Marinelli on November 16, 2016
Discovery

Is there a striking difference between Gen Z and Millennials in the workplace? You may be relieved to know that the two age groups exhibit overlapping mindsets that won’t cause confusion once Gen Z graduates from college to join Millennials at work. An online survey comprised of 1,001 U.S. students, 557 Millennials and 444 Gen Z, either currently enrolled or recently graduated, illustrates what both age groups want from their first job and what drives them to work hard.

At 36 percent, Gen Z and Millennials rank opportunity for growth as the most important aspect a starting professional job can offer. However, compared to Gen Z at 30 percent, 41 percent of Millennials want a job with career growth. Fulfilling work (19 percent) and stability (19 percent) are the next most important considerations. Ranking lower in priority, 10 percent value a friendly work environment, 7 percent consider flexible schedules, 6 percent expect the highest salary and only 1 percent hope for corporate social responsibility programs at their first job.

Both Gen Z and Millennials want to work hard at their first job, owing to their shared concern about the cost of education weighing on their shoulders. It’s interesting to note that Gen Z is more concerned about the cost of education (21 percent) than Millennials (13 percent). This could be due to the fact that Gen Z were born into the Great Recession, which was a powerful influence over their families’ financial statuses. Financial stability is the top aspiration of both age groups, followed by obtaining their dream jobs.

This infographic by Adecco illustrates the differences and similarities between Generation Z and Millennials in the workplace:

Infographic by Adecco

As there are few striking differences between Gen Z and Millennials’ ideas of their first workplace, these age groups will complement each other in professional settings where their relationship is built from commonalities they understand. By the time Gen Z is ready to enter the workplace en masse, which is just around the corner, companies should not have to worry about a professional culture being pulled in competing directions from Millennials’ established ideals.

Are you targeting Gen Z, Millennials, other ages, or a mix?

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About Lisa Marinelli

Lisa Marinelli is a third-year Advertising major at the University of Florida and is currently interning with the Pariseaf content marketing team. Drawn to unexplored turf, she absorbs her surroundings like a sponge. She finds the perfect background music for every moment of her day.

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