The Difference Between Generation Z And Millennials

Millennials have many aspirations: independence, the desire to travel, a healthy lifestyle… the list is quite long, so I’ll stop there. But what does the next generation want? And in particular, when it comes to work and life after college, do they have the same priorities? Adecco compiled the following infographic, based on his research, showing the differences between Generation Z and Millennials when it comes to working.

There is a big difference between millennials and generation Z

Lately, it seems that the term “millennial” has been transformed to refer to any young person. And references to so-called millennials tend to include a healthy dose of condescension. But there are specific parameters and characteristics that separate millennials from other generations.


How old are millennials anyway?

According to the Pew Research Center, millennials were born between 1981 and 1996, which means they will be between 24 and 39 years old this year. And while that represents a wide range of ages, millennials are, on average, much older than people assume.

“The average age of a millennial in the United States is over 30,” said Jason Dorsey, a Gen Z and millennial researcher and author of “Zconomy: How Gen Z Will Change the Future of Business.”

Similar to how baby boomers were named after a surge in the birth rate, millennials were named because their upbringing took place at the turn of the millennium, “an age that is compared to digital advances, innovation and , for some, perhaps appropriately, the end of the world as we knew it,” explained Amelia Rance, senior director of strategy and data analytics at marketing firm Fullscreen.

As post-millennial generations have embraced the digital lifestyle, there is some confusion about who is and who is not a millennial. But the differences are enormous.

“There’s a pervasive perception that you hear the word ‘millennial’ and that’s teenagers, or 20-somethings,” Dorsey said. “And the reason was that the name stuck so well that people just assign it to any young person, even though they’re assigning it to a stage of life, not a generation.”

But why the cut in 1996?

The key distinction between millennials and Gen Z is that millennials lived through, and remember, 9/11, Dorsey said. It was the defining moment for those who came of age at the time, in the same way, that COVID-19 is the generation-defining moment for Gen Z right now, she said.


Other important characteristics define millennials. On the one hand, they are the children of the baby boomers. “What our research shows is that baby boomers often raise their kids with the mindset of ‘We want it to be easier on our kids than on us,'” Dorsey said. “And they got it.” It’s probably for this reason that millennials have earned an unfortunate reputation for being lazy and overly sensitive. Hey, nobody’s perfect.

Another important distinction is that millennials were around for the rise of the internet. “A lot of people talk about millennials as if they’ve always had social media and that’s completely untrue,” Dorsey said. “Millennials were around when the internet came of age along with them. But that wasn’t Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Tiktok, it was email.” Dorsey explained that the best way to describe millennials is not technology, but technology-dependent.


Finally, millennials are the generation that went bankrupt financially just as they were trying to make their way in the world. “When we look at millennials, they’ve really been hit by student loan debt,” Dorsey said. “And then it was made worse by the Great Recession.”

As a result, millennials have faced years of economic struggle. They have delayed important milestones like buying homes and starting families, and many are living paycheck to paycheck.

But millennials aren’t just about doom and gloom. “Millennials were the first to not only want, but force others to break the stereotypes of their generation,” Rance said. “They believed they were more than just standard demographics, intersectional in their identities, and wanted to be spoken to as a whole person with many different attributes.”

What defines Generation Z

Generation Z was born between 1997 and 2012, making the oldest members of Generation Z around 23 years old. Once again, this generation is too young to remember 9/11, so far the coronavirus pandemic seems to be their generation-defining event.

The parents of Generation Z are Generation X. This group is very different from the boomers. And according to Dorsey’s research, one of the main goals of Gen X parenting was not to let their children end up as millennials. “There is kind of an unfortunate label that millennials have of being entitled and not working. Of course, before COVID-19, millennials were the largest generation in the workforce,” Dorsey said. “But she stayed.”

See also  What Is Productivity And How To Multiply It In 10 Easy Steps

Unlike millennials, Generation Z only knows about social media. “For many in Generation Z, they got their first smartphone or smart devices at age 10,” Dorsey said. So now there is a generation that chooses to be more entertained on YouTube or TikTok than on any of the traditional media.


In fact, according to Fullscreen’s recent generational study, Gen Z spends around 50 hours a week on social media. “It’s a place that makes them feel empowered and motivated, as well as a place for them to make real connections through direct messages, stories or forwarding content,” Rance said.

For better or worse, Gen Z turns to the web for everything from entertainment to news. “They just come from a different, natural relationship with technology than other generations, even millennials,” Dorsey added.

But as much as some of us like to hate young people, the truth is that Generation Z is a special group of kids with the power to make a huge impact on the world.

That’s partly because the Great Recession also had a major effect on Generation Z, but with positive results overall. Generation Z was old enough to see their parents lose jobs and houses, see the economy collapse, and understand what was going on. But they weren’t in the workforce yet. “They were young enough to change their perspective,” Dorsey said.

As a result, Gen Z is incredibly practical with their money. “They are great savers, more than we could have hoped for,” Dorsey said. They are also trying to graduate from college with as little debt as possible. And they also want to know that they are getting a good deal. “All that fiscal pragmatism. it is highly unusual given his age,” added Dorsey.

Generation Z also has a much stronger emotional connection to social causes, particularly the environment and social justice. They are reclaiming what it means to be politically active and making a change for a better tomorrow, Rance said. “Even if they can’t vote in the upcoming election, they are very passionate about various causes and want to make an impact by giving their voice or money to support their passions.”

They’re also the most diverse generation the US has ever seen, but interestingly, they’re also the most similar thanks to cheap and widely accessible mobile technology. From fashion to sports, Generation Z shares experiences in real-time and set trends that are then adopted by previous generations.

Gen Z is young, which means there’s still a lot to learn about what makes them tick. “But as we study them, they continue to have more and more differences from millennials,” Dorsey said. “Many people say that Generation Z are millennials 2.0, and they are absolutely wrong.”

They were raised differently, have a different relationship with technology, have a different view of money, and are coming of age at a very different time than millennials experienced.

Honestly? As much as they hate to admit it, Generation Z is probably the most informed, responsible, and hip of all generations. So, for their sake, stop confusing millennials with Generation Z.

8 Key Differences Between Gen Z and Millennials

A question I’ve been hearing a lot lately is “What’s the difference between Millennials and Generation Z?” I’m going to list 8 key differences between Gen Z and Millennials in this post, hopefully shedding some light here.
Generation Z, as it has been coined, is made up of those born in 1995 or later. This generation makes up 25.9% of the US population, the largest percentage, and contributes $44 billion to the US economy. By 2020, they will make up a third of the US population, which is certainly worth paying attention to.

Just to be clear:

A “Millennial” is a person who reaches adulthood around the year 2000.
Generation Z (also known as Post-Millennials, iGeneration, Founders, Plurals, or Homeland Generation) is the demographic cohort that follows the Millennials.

Knowing the difference between the two is important to prepare your business, change marketing, adjust leadership, and adapt recruiting efforts to stay relevant for the future.

How is Generation Z different from millennials?

Today, what is relevant is constantly being refined and Generation Z lives in a world of continuous updates. Generation Z processes information faster than other generations thanks to apps like Snapchat and Vine. Therefore, their attention span could be significantly lower than that of Millennials.

Although Gen Z may be less focused than their millennial counterparts, at school, they will create a document on the school computer, do research on their phone or tablet, while taking notes on a notepad, and then end up in front of the TV with a laptop. , while talking to a friend. You get the picture.

Gen Z can switch quickly and efficiently between work and play, with multiple distractions running in the background. working on multiple tasks at once. Talk about multitasking. Just think of how this kind of flow could reshape the office.

See also  How To Write A Thesis Plan?


Millennials care more about prices than Generation Z. Arguably, this is because they came of age during the recession.

Sixty-seven percent of millennials surveyed said they would go to the website to get a coupon, while only 46% of Gen Z respondents said they would do the same.

Millennials also tend to click more ads, with 71% of millennials in a recent survey saying they followed an online ad before making a purchase, yet only 59% of Gen Z said the same.

Gen Z is full of beginners

Many employers predict that more teens, between the ages of 16 and 18, will enter the workforce directly, opt for the traditional higher education route, and finish school online instead, if at all. Would you make a major investment, possibly leading to years of debt to come, knowing that new, more affordable (not to mention more convenient) online alternatives are emerging every day?

As we’ll discuss later in this post, Gen Z knows the true value of independence, and knowledge is no exception here. If a Gen Z’er knows that he is capable of learning something on his own, or through a more efficient and non-traditional route, he can bet that he will seize the opportunity.

Generation Z is more entrepreneurial

According to Gen Z marketing strategist Deep Patel, “The new world of high technology and networking has given rise to an entire generation thinking and acting more entrepreneurially.” Generation Z wants more independent work environments. 72% of teens say they want to start a business one day.

One apparent recurring factor you may notice throughout this post is that many Gen Z identification factors date back to the recession in 2008, from their frugality to the value of their experiences, to a greater likelihood of becoming entrepreneurs. . This is an interesting note to jot down.

Gen Z has higher expectations than millennials

Millennials remember playing solitaire, coming home to go online, and using AOL. Generation Z was born into a world invaded by technology. What was considered amazing and inspiring inventions are now taken for granted by teenagers.

“When it doesn’t come that fast, they think something is wrong,” said Marcie Merriman, executive director of growth strategy at Ernst & Young. “They expect companies, brands and retailers to be loyal to them. If they don’t feel appreciated, they’ll move on. It’s not about them being loyal to the business.”

Generation Z is big on individuality

Members of Generation Z were born social. Almost 92% of Generation Z have a digital footprint. Arguably as a result of celebrities and the media they follow, Gen Z seeks uniqueness in all walks of life primarily through the brands they do business with, future employers, etc.

Millennials were considered the first “global” generation with the development of the Internet, but as more people connect around the world, Generation Z will become more global in their thinking, interactions, and relatability. 58% of adults worldwide over the age of 35 agree that “kids today have more in common with their global peers than they do with adults in their own country.” Diversity will be an expectation of Generation Z.


After asking people “Would you call your digital devices (computer, smartphone, etc.) addicted,” we found that Gen Z members are 25% more likely than Millennials to say they are addicted to their digital devices. 40% of Generation Z are addicted to self-identifying digital devices.

This generation grew up with technology, and it’s probably hard for them to do without their gadgets. If this younger generation is constantly on their phones or devices and doesn’t watch as much live TV, we may see a massive shift in advertising methods and marketing messages.

Millennials vs. Generation Z: Key Similarities and Differences in the Workplace

By now, most employers are aware that there is a new generation entering the workforce. Millennials have moved out of their entry-level positions and it is the older members of Gen Z who are taking on entry-level positions and internships. Despite these differences, these two generations are often lumped together and are assumed to have similar traits and motivations. For employers trying to attract and retain talented candidates, not understanding the nuances between Gen Z and Millennials can be a huge disadvantage.

If you’ve been struggling to distinguish between these two generations, here are the most important differentiating factors between Millennials and Generation Z.


Gen Z vs Millennials: The 8 Differences You Need to Know

Eight fundamental differences between Millennials and Generation Z will affect organizational structure, workplace communications, employee training, and more.


The next generation looking to enter the workplace is Generation Z. According to the US Census Bureau, Generation Z (the post-millennial generation) makes up 25 percent of the population. (Read this to learn more about Generation Z.)

See also  What Is The Learning Plans For Millennials?

Sixty-two percent of Gen Z anticipate challenges working with Baby Boomers and Gen Xers, compared to only five percent who anticipate challenges working with Millennials.

Companies with a firm understanding of the expectations and preferences of emerging generations will be well-equipped to attract the next generation of talent, maximize their potential, alleviate inevitable intergenerational challenges, and capitalize on cognitive diversity through a generationally diverse workforce.


Gen Z vs Millennials: The 8 Differences You Need to Know

1. Realistic vs. Optimistic

Seventy-seven percent of Generation Z expect to work harder than previous generations.

Millennials became optimistic thanks to their supportive baby boomer parents and growing up in a time of prosperity and opportunity. Gen Z will be a realist thanks to their skeptical, outspoken Gen X parents and growing up in a recession. According to Pew Charitable Trusts, during the Great Recession, the median net worth of Gen Z parents dropped by nearly 45 percent.

2. Independent vs collaborative

Seventy-one percent of Generation Z said they believe in the phrase “if you want it done right, do it yourself.”


When given the option to organize a group of desks, Millennials would opt for a collaborative arrangement and would arrange the desks in a circle. Gen Z will be more competitive with their peers and take advantage of a do-it-yourself mentality at work. 69 percent of Gen Z would rather have their workspace than share it with someone else.

3. Digital natives vs. digital pioneers

Forty percent of Gen Z said working Wi-Fi was more important to them than working bathrooms.

According to Pew Research, only 14 percent of American adults had access to the Internet in 1995, but in 2014, 87 percent had access. Millennials were pioneers in the digital age. They witnessed the introduction and rise of social media, instant messaging, smartphones, search engines, and the mobile revolution. Generation Z did not witness these innovations but was born into them. Ubiquitous connectivity, highly curated global information, on-demand video, and 24/7 news cycles are native to Generation Z.


4. Private vs. Public

Seventy percent of Generation Z would rather share personal information with their pet than their boss.

As digital pioneers, Millennials explored (and in some cases exploited) social media and made their thoughts, opinions, and all the noteworthy or menial updates on life known. With safety and security in mind, Gen Z will be much more calculated and/or selective with the information they share online. For example, Gen Z gravitated toward Snapchat because of time-limited content that won’t be online forever like a Tweet or Facebook post would.

5. Face-to-face vs. digital-only

Seventy-four percent of Generation Z prefer to communicate face-to-face with their colleagues.

Millennials pioneered many of the digital communication tools (texting, instant messaging, Slack, etc.) that have made the workplace more efficient and effective, but some would say less enjoyable. Armed with their expertise in communicating using full sight, sound, and motion via Skype, FaceTime, Snapchat, etc., Generation Z is positioned as the ideal generation to finally strike the right balance between on-site communications working online and offline.


6. Learning on-demand vs. formal education

Seventy-five percent of Gen Z say there are other ways to get a good education besides going to college, according to Sparks & Honey.

Millennials are wondering if their large student debt was worth it, especially considering that 44 percent of recent college graduates are employed in jobs that don’t require degrees and one in eight recent college graduates is unemployed. Generation Z will explore educational alternatives. They will look for on-demand or just-in-time learning solutions, like how-to YouTube tutorials, or look for employers that offer strong on-the-job training and development.

7. Changing roles vs. changing jobs

Seventy-five percent of Gen Z would be interested in a situation where they could have multiple roles within the same workplace.

Growing up in fast times and coming of age in an on-demand culture, Millennials have little patience for stagnation, especially when it comes to their careers. (Read this to learn how to cure Millennials of their career impatience.) Gen Z won’t want to miss out on any valuable experience and will want to flex their learning-on-demand muscle by trying out various roles or projects (marketing, accounting, HR, etc.) within the organization.

8. Global Citizen vs. Global Spectator

Fifty-eight percent of adults worldwide over the age of 35 agree that “kids today have more in common with their global peers than they do with adults in their own country.”

Millennials were considered the first global generation because they shared similar characteristics and values ​​across borders and were able to watch major global events in real time. Yet Gen Z interacts with their global peers more seamlessly than any other generation. As more parts of the world become connected, geographies will continue to shrink, causing Generation Z to see themselves as citizens of the world.