With increasing competition for unique products tailored to a wide range of clients, design is often a crucial differentiator in making a product or a service stand out in an otherwise crowded market.
Generation Z (Gen Z) is called the generation of creatives. As a lot of them are now entering the workforce, the design industry may not be fully prepared for them yet.
Gen Z is bringing with them a multitude of distinct traits and characteristics. Their multi-tasking abilities and digital skills can provide a unique edge to the workplace, leading to more innovation and efficiency in the business.
But are generations really that different overall?
Understanding Gen Z
Known for their flair for technology, Gen Z is tech-savvy and exhibits innovative thinking. They are also often seen as entrepreneurial and solution-oriented.
Gen Z expresses themselves through art, video creation, dances, rap, painting, music, and photography.
At the workplace, they look for employers that value diversity, inclusion, collaboration, and individuality.
Research by Adobe Creative Group revealed that members of Gen Z are highly motivated by meaningful work and personal fulfillment rather than just monetary gains.
Managing Gen Z in the Workplace
Catering to the distinct needs and preferences of Gen Z employees is crucial to managing them effectively. Here are some tips:
- Offer opportunities for growth and development: Learning and progressing in the design industry is not a one-man show. Designers often require guidance and feedback from their mentors to hone their craft.
Mentorship programs, training, and workshops that cater to career growth can be an excellent way to attract Gen Z employees. 86% of Gen Z employees say it is important that their bosses or supervisors offer them opportunities to grow.
- Leverage their technological proficiency: Maximize the potential of Gen Z’s digital skills by giving them tasks that require innovative thinking and technical know-how.
- Foster a diverse and inclusive work culture: Ensure your workplace celebrates diversity and inclusion by promoting open-mindedness, equity, and respect for different perspectives.
Collaborating With Gen Z
To manage a multigenerational workforce that includes Gen Z, employers can adopt the following strategies:
- Promote open communication: Encourage open and transparent dialogue across various generations. This will foster mutual understanding and teamwork. 82% of Gen Z employees prefer to work under a boss who cares about them and can relate to them on issues beyond work.
- Provide a thriving work environment: The Adobe and Harris Poll surveyed 5,488 from across US, UK, Japan, Germany, and Australia. The survey results show that 56% of all Gen Z considered themselves creative compared to 44% of Millennials.
The interior design and architecture industry is inherently a hub of creativity and innovation. A workplace environment that allows employees to unleash their power of creativity is ideal for Gen Z workers.
- Provide flexibility: Offering flexible work hours, remote work options, or project-based work can help keep Gen Z engaged.
Places That Are Doing it Right
Several companies have successfully engaged Gen Z employees and reaped the benefits:
- Google: Google provides flexible work schedules, embraces diversity, and offers many professional development opportunities, attracting and retaining top Gen Z
- McDonald’s: McDonald’s implemented a global “Shadow Board” program, selecting high-performing young employees to provide insights into the company’s strategy and decision-making. This strategy promotes intergenerational collaboration and ensures Gen Z’s perspectives are valued.
- IBM: To foster intergenerational learning, IBM offers a reverse mentorship program that allows younger workers, including Gen Z employees, to impart their knowledge of new technologies and digital trends to more experienced employees.
Gen Z is a generation of creatives who utilize technology and value an open work environment. Hiring Gen Z for the design industry can be less challenging if the design companies adopt certain strategies to recruit and retain Gen Z employees.
Want access to up-and-coming talent? DBI can help you find exceptional talents across generations, leveraging our industry insights and tailored techniques to deliver outstanding candidates.