Remember the time when connecting to the internet was done through a string of processes? Connecting the modem wire to the computer, after which a dialog box opened wherein you clicked on the “Dial-Up/ Connect to the Internet” option, post which you used to hear a dial tone and the computer got connected to the internet.
If you remember doing this in your childhood days, you certainly can call yourself a millennial. Conversely, if what you can only recall is a Wi-Fi connection which is available 24×7 and connects to your system as soon as you turn it on, then we can say that you are a Gen Zer.
The prime difference, as pointed out by the Pew Research Center, anyone born between 1981 and 1996 can be considered a millennial whereas the ones born in 1997 and afterward are called Gen Zers. Turning 38 this year, the oldest millennials are now well into their adult stage while the oldest Gen Zers are turning 22 this year, stepping into their adult phase.
Thus, in continuation with the key difference given above, let us highlight a few aspects which highlight the differences between the Millennials and the Gen Zers.
Gen Zers do not know a world without mobile technology
While millennials have experienced a childhood with little to no tech involvement in their lives, Gen Zers grew up with gadgets like computers, laptops, tablets, and smartphones around them 24×7. A survey by IBM’s Institute for Business Value and National Retail Federation found that Gen Zers spend more than 70 percent of their time online, as stated in their report – Uniquely Generation Z.
Gen Zs are more entrepreneurial than Millennials
Unlike other generations, Gen Zers do not rely on traditional jobs to earn money. They find creative and innovative ways to churn out money. These could include making monetized YouTube videos, or selling products online through social media platforms, among others. Thus, about 70% of this super tech-savvy generation is self-employed, as per a study by the Harvard Business Review. Additionally, the Gen Zs are also reconsidering the need for formal education; finding ways to attain educational degrees online while focusing on earning money and making their wallets secure.
Gen Zs know more about money management
While the Gen Zers start earning money from a very early age; they are also smart at managing this money. Although Gen Zers have limited spending power, they have a significant influence on family purchases as compared to the previous generations. They search for the best deals, weigh multiple options before making a decision and consider the quality of products before making purchases. According to the Uniquely Generation Z report, 55% Gen Zs spend their money on their clothes while 60% of them also influence the family spending on this section.
Gen Zs are more diverse and accepting
A recent study by the Pew Research Center showed that nearly half of the Gen Zers belong to the racial or ethnic minorities, as compared to only 39 percent of minorities among millennials in 2002. This implies that Gen Z is not only a generation that is racially or ethnically diverse, but is also more open-minded when it comes to gender and sexuality. For them, gender is not a thing.
Gen Zs are better multi-taskers
Gen Zers are considered to be more multitasking as compared to the previous generations. They can seamlessly and quickly shift between work and play, despite multiple distractions around them. If you see a person sitting on their laptop creating a document while simultaneously researching on their phone, taking notes on their notepad, sitting in front of the TV and enjoying work and entertainment, both at the same time – you can undoubtedly say that they are a Gen Zer.
Gen Zs have higher expectations
Be it the brands they shop from or their employers or the internet per se, the expectations of Gen Zs are higher than that of any previous generations. They expect their brand to know them in and out and offer them products, services or solutions customised to their needs and preferences. They also expect their employers to treat them as individuals and have trust in what they are doing. Even the littlest of things like the internet speed or the page loading time of a website, Gen Zers do not appreciate higher waiting time and are bound to move on if not served properly.
Summing up, Gen Z is different from Millennials in many aspects and are a whole new generation of people who are ambitious, focused, entrepreneurial and have higher expectations while also being social justice-oriented, sensitive and open-minded.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is Generation Z age range?
Generation Z is typically considered to be the ones who are born in 1997 and afterward. This means that the oldest Gen Zers are now of age 22. Additionally, the other generations can be classified as follows according to their year of birth:
- Baby Boomers: 1944 to 1964
- Gen X: 1965 to 1980
- Gen Y or Millennials: 1981 to 1996
- Gen Z: 1997 to Present
What are the traits of Gen Z?
Gen Z is the generation of people who are born in 1997 and afterward. They exhibit the following traits:
Their media consumption habits are the highest.
They prefer cool products over cool experiences.
They are entrepreneurial, ambitious and highly tech-savvy.
They are adaptive to all cultures, interests, genders, and races.
They love to spend money, but also manage their funds well while keeping enough savings for their future.
How many years is a generation?
The term generation means “all the people born and living about at the same time, regarded collectively.” It can also be described as “the average period, generally considered around thirty years, during which an individual is born, grows up, becomes an adult and begins to have children of their own.”