– Gagan Singh, Chief Evangelist – Culture
Workplace dynamics have undergone major shifts over the past few centuries. Over time, workplaces have transformed to become more collaborative and inclusive. The working community has been learning and evolving every day. The 1960s and 70s witnessed a new wave of social movements which challenged the status quo and pushed for greater diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
As the workforce evolves, every new generation brings a unique perspective to the table. Generation X and Millennials have pushed organizations for employee well-being, digital collaborations and to create a diverse and inclusive workplace culture.
With the entry of Generation Z into the workforce, there has been a significant shift in workplace dynamics. Generation Z, being the first generation of digital natives has grown up with access to the internet and social media. This has given them exposure to different cultures, beliefs, and lifestyles, leading to a heightened awareness of systemic inequalities and a desire to address them. Having said that, the generation has encouraged companies to turn their focus toward equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI).
Creating a workplace that is diverse and inclusive requires a commitment to equity. By prioritizing equity, companies can create a culture where employees can thrive and contribute to the company’s success. Equity is the pillar that holds diversity and inclusion together.
It is the concept of ensuring everyone has access to the same opportunities and resources regardless of background or circumstances. It acknowledges that people have different needs and may require different levels of support to achieve the same outcomes. However, equality, on the other hand, is the concept of treating everyone equally regardless of their background and circumstances.
Embracing equity in the workplace makes sense for a plethora of reasons. When companies prioritize inclusion and fairness, they attract and retain employees from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences. When employees feel valued, supported, and treated fairly, they are more likely to be engaged and motivated to work. This will create a culture that is conducive to success for everyone.
In light of International Women’s Day’s theme of #EmbraceEquity, let us explore how Generation Z is contributing to this important conversation and how we, as an organization can inculcate these contributions to transform workplaces for the better.
- Emphasizing Equity & Inclusion:
Gen Z is passionate about equity and inclusion in the workplace and is pushing companies for a greater representation of underrepresented groups in the workforce including leadership roles. This includes women, candidates from different geographies, education, and other backgrounds, LGBTQ+ individuals, etc.
By advocating for greater diversity, Gen Z is helping organizations create more equitable workplaces where everyone can succeed.
- Embracing technology :
As the first generation of digital nomads, Gen Z is highly tech-savvy. The generation is pushing for the adoption of new technologies and digital collaboration tools in the workplace which has helped organizations attain data accuracy, drive innovation and improve workplace efficiency.
By embracing technology, Gen Z is helping organizations break the barriers of distance and time zones and to create opportunities for collaboration, connection, and networking globally.
- Demanding Flexibility :
Gen Z values flexibility and organizations have witnessed maximum productivity and employee retention by adopting flexibility in the workplace. Flexible work culture has allowed employees to focus on their well-being by allowing to be able to work in a way that suits their individual needs and preferences.
This has helped organizations empower their workforce to thrive and grow in their careers, regardless of their personal circumstances.
- Emphasizing Employee Well-being :
The employee’s mental, physical, and emotional well-being is an integral part of any workplace, so it is for the Gen Z workforce. By emphasizing employee well-being, organizations are creating a supportive workplace.
Employers are encouraged to create a workplace that values people as individuals, not just as workers. By providing the necessary support with mental health counseling, and health insurance, and creating a safe space for its people, organizations have achieved a positive and supportive work environment that benefits everyone.
- Grooming & Nurturing Future Entrepreneurs :
Hailing from the era of digital dominance which has opened floodgates of entrepreneurial opportunities, Gen Z is known for having a strong entrepreneurial spirit.
Organizations can tap into the collective creativity and potential of Gen Z by fostering a culture where their ideas are embraced and encouraging them to take on new challenges and develop their skill sets.
Generation Z’s efforts are helping to create more diverse, inclusive, and equitable workplaces where everyone has the opportunity to succeed. As we celebrate International Women’s Day, let us remember that equal opportunity for success can be achieved if organizations #EmbraceEquity.