NorthBridge Blog

Pat DuganNo matter the burdens we’re facing of a divided government or a deeply affected constituency with its own divides, the light is always there —if we care to see it.

The future is bright, and getting brighter according to observations made about a new generation whose pragmatism, entrepreneurial curiosity and realism are being tapped into as the next best thing.

Generation Z is available for hire.

Generation ZFollowing the Millennial generation is a group making up approximately 25% of the population; all-in-all, bigger than the Baby Boomers or the Millennials. According to Hal Brotheim, author of Introducing Generation Z, they’ll be better future employees.

They’re born in or about 1997 and are naturally inclined towards technology and entrepreneurship, 81% believe attaining a college degree is key to achieving professional goals.

Understanding the size and affinities of this group has moved corporations to extend typical college internships to high school students. This allows conversations, scouting and clarity about certain fields to start early. Chicago’s own Abbott Laboratories has already taken note and are engaged in a high school internship program started five years ago with an interest in encouraging, developing and retaining women and minority students within the STEM space (Science/Technology/Engineering/Math).

You can thank the X’ers

According to David Stillman, co-author of Gen Z @ Work, research suggests that key interests among this generation include careers with a social purpose, entrepreneurship, as well as an understanding and willingness to start at the bottom. Customization of the work experience is also key, which suggests the co-writing of goals and contributions. This makes sense in light of the organic branding process many Z’ers have devised solely via their social media presentations.

We can thank the trials and tribulations of Generation X (parents of the Z’s) for imparting an uninvited sense of market insecurity and financial distress. The result? Raising a generation that knows you have to, “fight to win,” cites Stallman.

We’re keeping our eyes on this coveted group as a rich resource for leaders and loyal contributors within large, medium and small-sized companies.

Gen Z Guy

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