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Gen Z and New Graduates -- What do we do with them?

A recent Fortune article outlined the challenges that Gen Z is experiencing adapting to office culture. Though remote work has certainly exacerbated challenges new graduates face when entering the workforce, the difficulties in transitioning from university to job are NOT new. As a communication professional and educator of fabulous, smart students, I have a unique vantage point of seeing what is taught in school and how it is applied, and not applied, on the job:

🔺 In school, students have structured timelines. Deadlines for projects, timelines for reading and class preparation. They are not prepared for shifting priorities and abrupt changes in direction.

🔺 They are taught about the importance of m

anaging up, but are not prepared to navigate multiple levels of leadership and how hierarchies and internal politics work. So, when you see a Gen Z employee “acting out of turn,” or “wanting to take over” this is likely the reason.

🔺 They are knowledgeable in their field of study, but have limited experience in working with other disciplines and departments.

What to do? Proper onboarding -- not many companies do this well. Mentoring on the job. Cross-discipline and departmental exposure. Feedback that considers Gen Z’s desire to understand the WHY and purpose behind their work. Open communication up, down and across. Need help onboarding? Contact me.

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