Is Gen Z a troublesome employee?


A highly debated query

The workforce landscape is constantly changing with the emergence of new generations. Gen Z, born approximately between the mid-1990s and early 2010s, is the most recent generation to enter the workforce. However, opinions on their work conductdiffer, with some believing they present challenges as employees. Let’s examine some research-backed points that address this highly debated query.

Are Gen Z employees entitled and lacking drive?

In a survey conducted by ResumeBuilder, a surprising 74% of managers and business leaders reported that they find Gen Z more difficult to work with than other generations. Many cited perceptions of entitlement and a lack of exertion, motivation, and productivity as primary concerns, often resulting in the dismissal of Gen Z employees. These concerns have gained attention and sparked discussions about the work ethic of this generation.


Representative ImagePhoto: Canva

Mental health challenges among Gen Z

According to a survey by McKinsey & Company, Gen Z self-reported “remarkably high rates of mental health challenges.” Shockingly, 55% of 18- to 24-year-olds stated that they have received a diagnosis and/or treatment for a mental illness. This insight sheds light on the difficulties faced by Gen Z and their potential impact on their work performance.

Technological abilities and work conduct

The same ResumeBuilder survey revealed that 49% of business leaders and managers find it challenging to work with Gen Z all or most of the time. The top reasons given for this difficulty include a perceived lack of technological skills, exertion, and motivation. Additionally, 65% of respondents stated that they have had to terminate Gen Z employees more frequently than those from other generations, with some being fired within the first week of employment. Being easily offended was also mentioned as a primary reason for the dismissal of Gen Zers.


Representative ImagePhoto: Canva

Unique productivity patterns of Gen Z

Gen Z’s approach to work is distinct from previous generations. According to a survey by Adobe, a significant portion of Gen Z employees reported being most productive between 6 p.m. and 3 a.m., unlike other generations. Moreover, more than half of Gen Z and Millennial employees expressed their intention to seek new job opportunities in the next year, highlighting their desire for change and better working conditions.

Ethical considerations and work-life balance

A Deloitte survey revealed that 37% of Gen Zers, despite being relatively new to the workforce, have already turned down job offers or assignments based on personal ethics. Work is central to the identity of 49% of Gen Z and 62% of Millennials, yet work-life balance is a primary factor when choosing an employer. Many Gen Z employees express concerns about living from paycheck to paycheck and fear that economic uncertainties will impede their ability to request salary increases, flexibility, or explore new job opportunities. A significant percentage of Gen Z and Millennials admit to feeling stressed or anxious at work all or most of the time.

How To Overcome Fear And Anxiety

So what is the answer?

The question of whether Gen Z is a disruptive employee is multifaceted and requires considering various perspectives. While there are concerns about their work ethic, motivation, and technological skills, it is important to acknowledge the unique challenges they face, including mental health struggles. Gen Z’s different approach to work and their emphasis on ethical considerations and work-life balance should also be recognized. The evolving dynamics of the workplace demand a nuanced understanding of this generation to create a more productive and harmonious work environment.

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