The young people and children that are growing up today will at least in some cases be likely to have different jobs than those of use that are already in the workplace. One could call them Generation Social Media, or Generation Z. These are considered to be those that were born after 1995. As explained by Chelsea Varney of Brand Watch they:
“Would never have seen a cassette, they’d snigger at a game of offline Scrabble, and wouldn’t believe that people once had to rush home to receive a phone call”.
This generation has never really known a time when the internet did not exist, and Varney refers to them as “digital natives”. Research that Varney presents suggests that there are going to be many changes in the workplace that will impact on the kinds of jobs that these people are likely to have. The research comes from Wagepoint and suggests that 65% of children just entering school at the current time will be likely to work in positions that do not currently exist in organisations. To show how this is already changing, Varney points out that Wagepoint’s research shows that the top 10 in demand jobs of 2010 were not even in existence in 2004. These include jobs like Social Media Manager and App Developer.
According to the Wagepoint information there will be all kinds of interesting jobs that do not even exist now. One such job might be “Vertical Farmer”. Such a person would focus on growing crops that rise upwards to leave greater space on the ground. Meanwhile a “Climate Controller” would do exactly as the job title suggests, removing the need for a weather forecaster at the same time. Other interesting job title predictions focus on health. For example, Varney explains that a Nano Medic will create and monitor small implants used for self-medication. Meanwhile a Memory Augmentation Surgeon would work to help older people to preserve and improve their memories.
According to Dr Michael O’Neill (2014) writing for the Metropolis magazine it is not just job titles that will change. The working environment also will be very different to today. It is argued by O’Neill that rather than seeing the structure, consistency and order that a Generation Y person might see, they will instead be more likely to encounter complexity, ambiguity and chaos. There will be an overwhelming array of choices, argues O’Neill, and this will make it harder for them to get their jobs done because they will be continually distracted by their environment.
Writing for Business Insider, Emmie Martin (2014) points out that Generation Z will be looking for different things. They will, according to Marin be more entrepreneurial and less focused on money. They will also be more eager to work from home. One important difference is that they will “crave honesty” and they will want the leaders of their organisation to demonstrate this. Leaders will have to show both honesty and integrity to be able to win them over. Generation Z will also, according to Martin, be less interested than others in the past in a traditional working week that runs from nine am to five pm Monday to Friday. That is argued to be because they do not feel bound to being at a specific place every single day. Rather, if they think they can get more work done from home, then they will be more likely to be interested in that. Interestingly, despite their having grown up surrounded by technology they will also be interested in talking face to face, avoiding instant chat and making an actual personal connection with others.
Could you imagine yourself as an Elderly Well-Being Consultant or as a Body Part Engineer who creates living body parts for transplants? What about as a Waste Data Handler who disposes of data waste in a responsible manner, or an Avatar Manager who designs and manages holograms of virtual people? Maybe you’d rather be a Child Designer – a person that works to design children that will fit the requirements that parents have of them. It may all sound a bit “out there” but this world is coming soon, and it is very real for the people of Generation Z. Watch this space!
In the meanwhile, check out this infographic on generation z:
Paula Newton is a business writer, editor and management consultant with extensive experience writing and consulting for both start-ups and long established companies. She has ten years management and leadership experience gained at BSkyB in London and Viva Travel Guides in Quito, Ecuador, giving her a depth of insight into innovation in international business. With an MBA from the University of Hull and many years of experience running her own business consultancy, Paula’s background allows her to connect with a diverse range of clients, including cutting edge technology and web-based start-ups but also multinationals in need of assistance. Paula has played a defining role in shaping organizational strategy for a wide range of different organizations, including for-profit, NGOs and charities. Paula has also served on the Board of Directors for the South American Explorers Club in Quito, Ecuador.