Gen Z and Work: Four Tips for Management.
As we continue to study how organizations can lead and engage Gen Z in a multigenerational workforce, in this post, we lay out four key insight from our Research Center that will help leaders understand and engage Gen Zers in their organization.
1. Motivation not Productivity – GenZers do not have a productivity problem, what they have is a motivation problem. Share the picture of what the payoff will be when they achieve the goal, this helps them develop an emotional connection to it and will inspire them to do what they need to do.
2 Connection not Correction – Focus on their world before their work. GenZers thrive in an atmosphere of connection. Do not address them as “everybody”, pay attention to personally knowing about their world. Ask them about their other aspirations, life, relationships, fears not because you want to teach them, but because you want to know to them. Commend them on the key decisions they are making or have made in their personal life even when you do not agree. The challenge most leaders face is that they are so fixated on correction instead of connection. Learn and master the art of respecting the GenZers model of life especially when you do not agree. Nothing gets GenZers more productive than a feeling of being understood, connected with, and respected. When leaders learn to connect with Gen Zers they are able to influence them and with influence comes the ability to control outcome.
3. Block Time and Allow Flexibility – GenZers face a major challenge of randomness, they are constantly being pulled by the fact that the world is their village; so they need to constantly check their social platforms and update status to keep their tribe informed. So in order to get them productive, set a project timeline, and be flexible to negotiate it as long as it’s within the time frame for the achievement of the task.
4. Appreciation – This generation does not often get appreciated. There’s a belief that they disregard rules, are rude, arrogant, attention-seeking, inexperienced, lack loyalty, and not ready to go through the process but want instant success. So most leaders have the tendency to forget to deliberately appreciate them because they see it as something not worthy of so much attention. Appreciating GenZers is one of the most effective tools for getting them to be productive. They are a generation whose primary love language is words of affirmation. Gifts are a good appreciation form for Gen Zers but nothing beats looking straight into their eyes or hugging, or giving a pat on the back and telling them well-done.