Generation Z – also known as zoomers – are the first generation to have never lived without digital technology. They are now starting to enter the workforce, begging the question what does this generation want out of the future of work?
According to a survey of 2,600 individuals aged between 18 and 25 by global marketing agency LEWIS, Gen Z’s perspective on the world, including the workplace, is one rooted in values, and particularly racial and gender equality.
54% of those surveyed said they would refuse to work for a company that doesn’t share their values. Only 19% said they would be willing to work for a company with different values.
In addition, 67% said that values were more important than who is the company’s CEO. However, zoomers expected the CEO and the senior leadership to lead by example – 41% wanted CEOs to be judged on their commitment to social issues.
LEWIS’s ‘New Rules’ report, which was conducted to support the UN’s HeForShe movement, also found that Gen Z want diversity programs – including race and gender equality – to be woven into the company culture.
45% believed that in terms of diversity, gender and race, were the top priority, while 39% were supportive of companies with a diversity of thought.
However, this generation is forgiving of companies that make an effort to support their values, even if they don’t achieve the outcome. 41% of Gen Z said they would work for a non-diverse company if they had a strong diversity, equity and inclusion program.
Although LEWIS’ research found that company values were the second most important factor in their decision to take job, it is clear that Gen Z is also interested in stability and security at work as the number one factor in deciding whether to take a job was personal growth.
LEWIS’s report concludes: “The businesses most likely to succeed aren’t the ones that give Gen Z the option between equality and stability.
“It’s the companies that try to tick all the boxes and meet zoomers halfway.
“An organization that can marry opportunity with social activism and fairness is the one that will attract and retain the best talent that Gen Z has to offer”.
HeForShe global head Edward Wageni commented: “It’s clear that the onus is on today’s leaders to make clear commitments about how they will progress these important topics.
“By ignoring societal issues, they will fail to connect with almost an entire generation.”