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Let's talk about Y and Z generations

50% of the world population is now aged under 30: among them we distinguish generation Y, young people of 20 to 35 years and the generation Z, less than 20 years.

Generation Y

The generation Y, which has been written about extensively, is quite unloved by his peers that qualify it of “spoiled rotten generation”!

Emmanuelle Duez, founder of The Boson Project, a “new generation” consulting firm, and the Think Tank WoMen’Up, defines Generation Y as the "first time generation":

• 1st global generation Today, there are more similarities between a young American of 25 years, a young French or a young Chinese than between a young French aged 25 and a French baby boomer.

• Next great generation Half the world’s population is under 30 years.

• 1st digital generation Michel Serres, French philosopher and historian of sciences, defines the digital revolution as the third anthropological revolution of Humanity.

• 1st post modern generation At the dawn of a new era: reinvention of economic, financial and social models.

• 1st omniscient generation ⇒ A massive and globalized generation that arrives in a world to be reinvented with a super power: the digital. ⇒ A generation that experienced outsourcing its brain in his pocket jeans (today we speak of the “207th bones”, speaking of mobile phone). ⇒ A generation whose knowledge is at one click, thus changing the relationship to authority and to the company.

This generation Y cares more about “Why” before “How”, flexibility before safety, the ambition to accomplish itself before to succeed … No wonder, then, whether it is in conflict with the current company models!

The generation Y does not understand and does not recognize the management systems currently in place in companies. It prefers to leave its job or simply disengage. We are witnessing a turnover up despite a complicated economic situation of these young people.

A study conducted in 2014 by Edhec Business School from 1500 young graduates of business and engineering schools shows that 43% of them have left their company less than two years after having started because they did not have the opportunity to acquire new skills or to move to another position.

In short, Y have established the foundation for new models of companies and societies…

Generation Z

While the generation Y is still on everyone’s lips, its successors, Z, are already at the doors of the business world… And they are ready to continue the societal transformation initiated by their elders! The Z are born with the Internet and in a world of constantly interconnections, thus when companies are in the accelerated digitization of their organization, the Internet and digital are not a big deal for them, it is simply “the air they breathe.”

⇒ According to an investigation conducted by The Boson Project from 3 000 young people under 20 years in France, it appears that the question, “What job will you do tomorrow? “Over 50% of respondents answer: entrepreneur in the sense of giving the opportunity to one or more business to benefit from their skills.

⇒ Another investigation conducted by Deloitte from 7 800 young people active in the world, 70% of under 20 do not identify with the traditional business model and would rather be self-employed. They perceive the current innovative companies like too focused on short-term profit and little concerned with the personal development of their employees.

When the Y proclaim themselves “entrepreneur of his professional life,” the Z go even further and see themselves as “entrepreneur of their life…”.

To go further, you can watch the vidéo of Emmanuelle Duez who gives a talk about generation Y and Z during the 4th edition of the Positive Economy Forum in le Havre, in 2015:

Emmanuelle Duez – Positive Economy Forum Le Havre 2015 [English]

Source : Youtube Channel « Positive Economy Forum Le Havre 2015 »

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