Generation Z is defined as individuals born in the mid-90s and later, and guess what? That means some of those people are already 25 years old and the demographic is growing rapidly as more and more members of this tech-savvy generation join the workforce.
As is the case with any generation, there are better ways to communicate with most members of this group of young professionals, and here are some tips on improving communication with Gen Z.
Know How Gen Z Likes to Communicate
Technology and communication based around that technology are two of the fastest growing and everchanging fields, and each generation is more tech-savvy than the last. It’s a fair guess that the tech-savviness would give way to a preference for emails, and Gen Z does prefer to work remotely, but even though Gen Zers prefer to communicate digitally in their social lives, studies have shown that Gen Zers in the workplace are big advocates for old-fashioned, in-person meetings when meetings need done. The reasons for this vary, but a major one noted was that Gen Zers feel it is easier to gain the respect of the older generation in person.
Clearly Defined Roles Can Help Communicate Responsibilities
Though generally entrepreneurial-minded, Gen Z likes to be told exactly what is expected of them and when it needs done by. Coupling this with an affinity to work remotely can add a level of difficulty regarding communication, but happy employees are the most productive employees, and communicating with Gen Z virtually isn’t that daunting of a task. It helps to have great project management tools at your disposal.
Keeping the communication clear and ensuring all of your Gen Z folk’s ideas are heard seems to be the best ways to retain them as employees.
Express An Understanding of Their Challenges & Strengths
Millennials and Gen Z alike are becoming harder and harder to retain, and in 2019 a survey conducted determined that 49% of Millennials planned on leaving their employer within two years. Understanding the “why” of this statistic is important in retaining your own employees who are under 30.
Understanding the business needs of your younger employees is a great way to keep them around. Most don’t want raises or fancy offices, but rather clear-cut paths to advancement, learning opportunities, and a better work/life balance. Remote work is a great way to slim down hours dedicated to work that aren’t actually billable (sitting in traffic, going to lunch, etc.).
Other Forms of Communication
Communication regarding an individual can be just as important as communication with that individual, and utilizing data analytics within your company can garner ways of learning about your employees without actually talking to them. Microsoft Excel has a lot of easy-to-use features to display data gathered on your employees’ search habits, screen time, etc.
Social media interaction is also a great way to let the younger generation know that your company isn’t an old, sinking ship. Don’t overdo it and look like the Uncle who’s trying to hard to be cool, but sharing relevant business articles via social media and tagging younger employees in work-related posts are both non-verbal communication strategies that have proven to help in retaining Gen Z employees.
Gen Z is probably the most universally aware generation when it comes to the endless list of falsities that occur in our everyday lives. Whether it be the news, or what they read on social media, Gen Z is well-versed in knowing when someone isn’t telling them the truth. This should be part of communication with everyone, but honesty is exceptionally important when it comes to retaining workers from the younger generations. Older workers may be able to see when sugarcoating is occurring, but it’s less of an issue to them as it is to Gen Z.