Living and Giving

What Do You Need To Know About Generation Z?

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We\’re excited to announce our Founder  and CEO Pamela Hawley was just featured in Forbes publication! The article is entitled What Do You Need To Know About Generation Z?, and was published on March 19, 2019. Please see below!








As a social enterprise leader, you have to stay on top of the trends. And one of the most important trends is effective management. So, let\’s dig into what you need to do to successfully manage the newest generation of workers — Generation Z — at your social enterprise.

What can we expect? First of all, generalizations are always that — a sweeping overview. We need to value each individual as a unique person with special talents and capabilities. So, while it can be an overall helpful guide, no one person fits into a compartment.

Alright, let’s dig in!
Here are seven things you need to know about Generation Z:
1. You’re required to be flexible.
You might think it’s funny to say you’re “required” to be flexible. Well, it’s true. The responsibility is yours to be open to different ways of doing things. Get into that mindset now.
If you haven’t already, be open to different schedules for Gen Z employees. While they are serving the world with you during the day, they also value balance. Perhaps they want to devote two hours to painting each evening or playing on a co-ed softball team.
Allow flexibility in customizing jobs for people. Today\’s generation of workers values things such as contract or part-time work, flexible hours and remote work. You’ll have a higher likelihood of it working out and them staying long-term when you cater to their unique lifestyle. And if it’s not a good fit, then it’s also easier to part ways.
2. You need to expand your benefits package.
You might think that health care, full-time work, vision, medical and dental plans are automatic requisites for hire at a nonprofit, and that\’s all you have to do. But for many Gen Z employees, they’re just starting out. They\’re not necessarily thinking about committing, so they may not be as concerned about long-term benefits. They are often more focused on self-exploration, learning and maximizing who they can be.
So, when they think of benefits, they’re thinking more about what supports their lifestyle now. That could mean a gym membership, dog walking services, payment for pet lodgings when they go on trips and pet insurance. The key is to go beyond traditional, \”old-school\” benefits.
3. They want to make a difference.
If you haven’t guessed by now, Generation Z is even stronger about wanting to do what they love to do. They often want to find a way to serve the world, and they want to do good now. And that\’s why they have joined your social enterprise.
So, to retain this generation of employees, don\’t require that they \”pay their dues\” before they\’re able to do something interesting and rewarding. They want to find their passion now. Be responsive to that in their day-to-day. Have a conversation about their goals, put them on a special project that is interesting to them or find an activity that relates to their passion.


4. They\’re in-tune with technology.

Generation Z is even more in-tune with technology, so use it for your benefit at your social enterprise. While Generation Y grew up with technology, Generation Z grew up on technology. While some technology was introduced a little bit later with Generation Y, Generation Z pretty much started using technology as infants. Maybe their mom would give them an iPad where they could touch shapes or colors and start to engage with a device in addition to or instead of traditional plastic toys or books.

Devices have helped nurture and engage Generation Z out of the womb. They don’t just think technology is cool; they think it is a natural, normal and easy part of life. To embrace this, consider letting them solve problems at your organization through innovative tech tools, such as Salesforce, Instagram stories and Slack.

5. They\’ve gone global.

Generation Z is going to be even less focused on nationalism. Their whole world is global and they expect their experiences to reflect different cultures, different viewpoints and openness to new ideas.


If you aren\’t fostering this type of culture in your social enterprise, these young employees are likely leave. A U.S.-oriented view or any one country-centric view won\’t work. That\’s not how our world works today. Your social enterprise might be stateside, but you can still recruit a global team and care about global issues.

6. Fear of missing out is a real thing.

Is the World Cup going on? Or Major League Baseball season? Hockey semi-finals? Make it accessible. Get it on a screen and allow employees to take part. If they feel they are missing out on life experiences because of work, they may come to resent it.


For example, at our WeWork in the financial district in San Francisco, they set up a big screen and we set our desks near the game. We also had team members watch from the couch, while working on their computers. So, find a way that allows your Gen Z employees to experience life, while getting work done.

7. They want your help.

As a senior leader (even if you’re just five years older), you need to help younger employees. Have that mindset from the very beginning. You know that navigating your social enterprise takes more than creatively structuring a job and different benefitsIt’s important to listen to Generation Z and show that you care about their career pathway. Then, you can show them that these are important skills to your social enterprise. Try to make the time. This generation and Generation Y are awesome about appreciating mentors.