Our knowledge of demographics and trends has been massively enlarged thanks to the countless studies, research projects, and data collection on millennials (those born approximately 1980 to 1995). As grateful as we are for all that millennial insight, a new wave is rolling onto the demographics landscape. Move over, millennials! Here comes Generation Z (those born in or after 1996).
As with every generation, Generation Z will bring its own unique influence to all aspects of how we live, do business, and function in the exciting future that awaits us. Fascinating insights also arise by comparing Generation Z to its older sibling generation, the millennials. Based on research by the new agency, “sparks & honey,” Erik Oster, writing for Adweek, shares some of those important comparisons:
- Whereas millennials tend to multitask between just two screens, Generation Z members prefer five screens.
- Whereas millennials communicate primarily with text, Generation Z members primarily use images.
- Whereas millennials like to share things and remain focused on the present, Generation Z members like to create things and remain focused on the future.
- Whereas millennials tend to be optimists who want to “be discovered,” Generation Z members tend to be realists who expect to work for success.
These generational comparisons are quite interesting. They raise some intriguing questions to me:
- It appears that perhaps millennials have a bit of an entitlement mentality when compared to Generation Z. If so, is that due to the fact that many of the millennials having been under the care of “helicopter parents” which may have engendered the entitlement mentality? Generation Z members seem to be a bit more realistic about how they will succeed in life. Might this be due to their parents (often millennials) having specifically chosen a different childrearing approach based on what they now see in this new world?
- Do the elements of technology multitasking and communicating more with images indicate Generation Z’s intensity? Do Generation Z members seem to be more technologically fluent than the millennials, thus allowing increased speed and intensity? We know that images are often more emotion provoking which can be an intensifier for all activities. Overall, Generation Z has a strong passion to be a successful contributor to the world.
All that said, I can only affirm that it will be fascinating to see what Generation Z’s contributions will be in our collective futures.