I know, it can be a rubbish label. You might have thought they’d developed something better by now. Nonetheless, Gen Z is of course the group born since just before the start of the Millennium. Not Thatcher’s children, more New Labour’s offspring.
Poor lambs, they are still in their teens and someone has already slapped a label on them. Post-Millennials, Gen Wii, iGeneration were all floated by USA Today back in 2012, but Gen Z seems to have stuck.
Too young to remember 9/11, they have grown up inside a world controlled by a political and financial turmoil. As a result, they are keen to look after their money, and make the world a better place. A report by Sparks & Honey, a US advertising agency (it is invariably ad agencies which try to fix labels to people), describes this generation as the “first tribe of true digital natives” or “screenagers”. But unlike the older Gen Y, they are smarter, safer, more mature and want to change the world. Their pin-up and greatest exemple is Malala Yousafzai, the Pakastani education campaigner, who survived being shot by the Taliban, and who became the world’s youngest ever Nobel Prize recipient.
As one of this generation, i can say that we’re either derided as self-centred, money hungry, want-it-all-last-weekers, or hailed as the most educated,
tech savvy, open minded and performance driven generation yet. Whatever your view, and maybe it’s somewhere between the two, as a Baby Boomer or Gen X leader be certain that the Gen Yers are going to be providing you with a whole new set of challenges when it comes to ensuring they operate at their best as individuals and as members of high-performing teams.