Also known as Post-Millennials, theiGeneration, or the Homeland Generation, Generation "Z" is the demographic cohort following the “Y” generation.
There are no precise dates for when this cohort starts or ends; demographers and researchers typically use starting birth years ranging from the mid-1990s to early 2000s and ending birth years ranging from the late 2000s to early 2010s.
Generation “Z” is led by today’s teens and tweens. Generation “Z” individuals are more aware, self-reliant, driven, pragmatic, savvy and have become demanding customers. They have specific tastes and personal preferences. They are most influenced by online video bloggers, and “real People,” with whom they can relate. They prefer “real People” instead of actors advertising products.
Tim Elmore, an author who writes about Growing Leaders, describes the six defining characteristic of Generation “Z” which is our newest generation. The six characteristics that growing leaders need to be aware of are the following13:
In this generation, individuals may be well-adjusted, fairly happy, but not giddy as compared to Generation “Y” people. These individuals are more realistic, not idealistic, and jaded by the tough economy, terrorism, and increased complexities of life at home, in our communities, in our nation, and worldwide.
These individuals after seeing or hearing of individuals or possibly their siblings get in trouble for posting controversial material on social media don’t want to be tracked down. Because of this, Apps such as Whisper and Snapchat have increased in growth in the past few years. Facebook, on the other hand, has decreased in volume.
These individuals want more out of life and know hard work is required. They want to set the pace and build successful businesses.
Money represents success and being conservative can help in building a strong financial base. Vacations may be planned on-line after being researched for the best “bang for their bucks!” Many worry about the future and think having a lot of money represents success.
This generation constantly multi-tasks and may be on their iPhones, tablets, iPods, or using more than three computer screens at a time. When communicating, they tend not to look at you, but at their phones or other things in the room. When in class, instead of looking at the speaker they may be sending messages, looking at new information, or ordering supplies on the phone.
Mr. Elmore13 states, “Generation Z has communicated enough with marketing researchers and academics to reveal that they experience: 4D Thinking. Because their minds are streaming in so many directions, they’ve become post-moderns who are hyperaware of their surroundings.”
Surveys indicated that the “Z” generation is addicted to technology. They prefer shopping online for everything from equipment, food, housing, etc. and having their goods delivered. They also prefer interacting using social media websites for a significant portion of their socializing.