Every generation in the workplace appreciates employee Thank You gifts, and Generation Z is no exception — in fact, showing appreciation is even more crucial to engaging these young people.
Several characteristics are emerging in the generation born after 1995: they have high expectations, they’re practical and they’re in a position to influence the workplace for years.
The oldest members of Generation Z are graduating college now, so this is the year “Generation Z starts flooding workplaces,” according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, and it’s happening “at the same time that there is a tight labor force.”
Like Millennials, the Generation Z cohort cares about the environment and wants to have a passion for work.
But today’s recent college graduates also saw, at an impressionable age, the effects of the Great Recession on their families.
According to social scientists who study generational patterns, experiencing the recession at a young age created a generation of young people with entrepreneurial spirit and a practical appreciation of pay, benefits and mentoring possibilities.
And there’s a lot of them.
“Gen Z is larger than Generation Y, which has already made workplaces more entrepreneurial and pushed work/life flexibility issues more than ever before,” the Star Tribune’s Catherine Roberts writes. “That means these young adults will have an outsized influence on workplace culture for years to come.”
What does this mean for your company’s approach to employee appreciation and employee Thank You gifts? You’ll need a strong appreciation program to usher them into the workplace and keep them engaged. As your organization begins to hire interns and new employees from Generation Z, be prepared!
Reinforce Gen Z Excellence with Employee Thank You Gifts
Teenagers and college students aren’t working summer jobs like they used to, according to a U.S. News report last month.
That has big implications for how your company manages young employees. Teens are working less for two main reasons.
- College-bound young people are spending more time than ever in summer school and on other educational pursuits or volunteer work that will burnish college applications and help them get the most out of expensive, competitive higher education programs.
- There are simply fewer jobs available to them. The low-skill jobs teenagers used to do over the summer and after school, like scoop ice cream or bag groceries, are going to older workers.
As a result, their first professional or full-time job is often their first experience ever in the workplace — and that presents a challenge.
“Economists and labor market observers worry that falling teen employment will deprive them of valuable work experience and of opportunities to encounter people of different ethnic, social and cultural backgrounds,” according to U.S. News.
It’s an issue that isn’t going away anytime soon: “The longer-term trend for teen employment is down and likely to stay that way.”
For employers, this means Generation Z workers may need more positive reinforcement and on-the-spot recognition to learn workplace skills.
Sharing employee Thank You gifts isn’t just a nice thing to do once a year, they’re an important part of communicating gratitude and reinforcing gratitude.
For young employees who may not have had the opportunity to hone basic on-the-job skills, gifts are great way to reward good behavior and encourage more of it.
For Generation Z, the challenge is not a lack of enthusiasm. Young workers today are generally motivated, educated and ready for meaningful work.
“If Generation Z are trusted and tasked with something of importance, most will rise to the challenge. They will be flattered and not want to break this trust, in turn motivating them to deliver quality results,” according to Information Age.
That’s where positive reinforcement is key: “They will feel like a valued member of the team,” engaged to achieve their best.
Your employee Thank You gifts don’t have to be lavish to have impact. Small tokens of gratitude, like $5 gift certificates accompanied by a note of thanks, are easy to share on the spot and send an important message of value. On-the-spot recognition will resonate with young workers who’ve grown up with the instant feedback of social media.
Your youngest workers are likely to respond with loyalty — more so than Millennials.
Members of Generation Z “have a more pragmatic outlook than Millennials,” due to watching their parents weather the recession, according to SHRM.
A study released this month shows they have “more of a willingness to work for big companies and to stay put longer.”
“Unlike Millennials, who’ve tended to change jobs comparatively quickly, members of Generation Z are willing to commit to three to five years with the right employer,” the study found.
It’s a return in some ways to a more traditional workplace.
“Although their attitudes reflect a return to more traditional workplace values such as the desire for a clear career path and stability, these potential employees are not old-school. They bring a future-forward outlook, in the form of digital skills and mindset, to any employer,” the report said.
One of Generation Z’s expectations is clear communication on how their contributions support the company’s purpose. Sharing employee Thank You gifts is a clear, generous way to show young employees that the company cares about their success as much as the bottom line.
Free Resource: Your Day-to-Day Employee Engagement Calendar
We all need inspiration to spread workplace gratitude daily. gThankYou’s 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Celebration Calendar gives you the tools and inspiration to build a culture of appreciation every day of the year. Be inspired; download yours today, absolutely free.
“In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day — or to celebrate each special day.” – Rasheed Ogunlaru, coach and author
About gThankYou, LLC
Turkey Gift Certificates, Ham Gift Certificates, and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou are America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any brand (Turkey, Ham, or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any grocery store in the U.S.
gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime. gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.
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