Gen Z Workplace Traits That Managers Love
To see the other side of that story, we asked a group of business leaders about the Gen Z workplace traits that the demographic brings to the table. Here some of the key themes that stood out to us from our time speaking to businesses.
1. Gen Z workers always come with fresh ideas
Several key decision makers managing mentioned how vital it was to have young staff members tuned into the latest trends and stories – something Gen Z in their free time yet has automatic, tangible value to millions of businesses.
“By Monday, our Gen Z employees are already well-versed in events that occurred on Sunday,” says Harry Johns White, Marketing Manager at NBABlast. “This trait is incredibly valuable in our fast-paced industry.”
“Their use of social media as a tool for information gathering is noteworthy,” White continued. “They often scoop important news from these platforms, staying ahead of traditional media outlets. There have been numerous occasions where I’ve wanted to share a news piece from a newspaper, only to find they are already familiar with the story.”
“Having grown up in a digital world, they are able to approach challenges in creative, innovative ways. At Lottery ‘n Go, our Gen Z writers develop ideas for engaging lottery content on emerging platforms that we would never think of” – Liam Wilson, Editor-In-Chief, Lottery n’ Go
Being alert to social and technological change in this way leads to more useful, imaginative suggestions on how to do things differently. Kateryna Popova, HR consultant at PRM, told Tech.co. that Gen Z “are not afraid to challenge the status quo and bring innovative ideas to the table”.
Popova went on to say that her Gen Z employees’ refreshing desire to make an impact and find value in their jobs has so far “led to more community-focused initiatives at PRM, such as community-driven events.
“The amount of fresh ideas and perspectives they have is simply mind-blowing to me,” Mateusz Calik, CEO of Delante SEO Agency, agrees. “They are literally [the] driving force behind our company’s ability to stay ahead of trends and continuously evolve our strategies.”
2. Gen Z employees approach workplace relationships differently
Other business leaders who spoke to Tech.co said that Gen Z employees they’d worked with contributed to creating a more positive atmosphere in the office.
“Their approach to workplace relationships is notably different,” observes Michał Kierul, CEO of INTechHouse. “We had instances where employees, despite sharing the same office space, interacted minimally, primarily on a need basis. However, within just two months of a Gen Z employee’s probation period, there was a noticeable change.”
“They made an effort to know everyone in the office well” he continued. “When asked about this approach, they emphasized the importance of good communication for effective teamwork. They believe that understanding colleagues personally leads to better professional interactions and a more cohesive work environment.”
Jay York, Owner of Grove Brands, also credits Gen Z employees with making the office a more pleasant place to work. “Gen Z are great at making the workplace fun, contributing a lot in the way of humor” he told Tech.co via email. “They are also very community-oriented, always interested in bringing the team together, through outside game nights.”
“I think they are fiercely protective of maintaining a positive space and are not afraid to voice their concerns or frustrations” he added.
3. Gen Z want to improve how things work
We are creatures of habit, and some work processes can quickly become stale and obsolete if their utility is not continuously questioned and assessed. Gen Z, however, are willing to stick their head above the parapet and drive change in the workplace.
“Something I’d like to highlight about Gen Z employees is their straightforward and transparent communication style,” says Kamil Rejent, CEO at Survicate, who has worked extensively with Gen Z employees. “They prefer directness and clarity, which has reduced many misunderstandings for me already”.
“Despite their reputation for impatience, I’ve found that this trait often manifests as a drive for efficiency and a dislike for unnecessary bureaucracy,” Rejent continued. “They are results-oriented people and prefer streamlined processes, which pushes our company to eliminate redundancies and focus on what truly matters.”
“What positively sets Gen Z apart from employees from other generations is a willingness to embrace change and differences, agrees Mathias Ahlgren, CEO & Founder at Website Rating, who also reported that his Gen Z colleagues had a unique “willingness to see things from more than one viewpoint”.
And who knows – that Gen Z drive to improve things might just save you some money. “I had a Gen Z employee approach me about free online platforms that could help with some of our internal processes, and they were right!” recalls Bobby Lawson, technology editor at EarthWeb, who also praised their digital fluency and willingness to troubleshoot technical issues.
4. Gen Z workers are adaptable problem solvers
While Gen Z is often depicted as a generation that gives up when the going gets tough, several business leaders we spoke to reported that in their experience, members of Gen Z have always been eager, resilient problem solvers.
“Gen Z excels in their attitude to problem-solving. They approach problems with an uncommon fusion of imagination and practicality,” Hemponix CEO Sam Romain explains.
“[Gen Z’s] innovative thinking and openness to trying new things have revolutionized the way we handle both our internal operations and our product offers” – Sam Romain, Hemponix.
Ryan Carrigan, CEO of MoveBuddha, also appreciates Gen Z’s willingness to think out of the box. Gen Z employees help him to “round out a fuller perspective of our team’s capabilities and strategies.”
“There’s a unique adaptability and resourcefulness that they bring to the table,” he explained to Tech.co via email, citing the drastic economic and social shifts those in the demographic have lived through already. “I value the way that Gen Z tends to approach collaboration.”
5. Gen Z workers set healthy boundaries for themselves
While Gen Zers’ emphasis on not overworking themselves is often portrayed as a weakness – an unwillingness to go “the extra mile” that often leads to longer hours – others see this as one of the demographic’s key strengths.
“[Gen Z’s] ability to prioritize their well-being without compromising on the quality of their work is a lesson in balance that benefits the entire workplace,” says Roksolana Ponomarenko, sustainable development ambassador at PRM.
“It fosters a healthier, more sustainable work environment and encourages others to adopt a similar mindset” she added.
Will Hatton, founder and CEO of the Broke Backpacker, said that he’s most impressed by Gen Z’s ability to “stick up for themselves” and “draw boundaries” where they see fit.
“They aren’t afraid of honesty and will call situations as they see it,” Hatton continued, adding that Gen Z’s “confidence, courage, and ability to draw boundaries are three of the best characteristics they bring to [their] workplace.”