Gen Z'erReady or not, here they come! Raised with internet, cell phone, MP3, texting and social media, the group known as Gen Z (arguably 1991 to 2011) is growing up! The group brings an unusual mix of skills. They can read “text,” but struggle with facial expressions. Unless information moves quickly and uses multimedia, it is tough to get them to pay attention; yet in 10 days, thousands of online video garners mapped out a key protein structure for HIV research, something scientists had been attempting for over 10 years. Gen Z’ers build internet “friend” networks to share every thought but have trouble holding a ten-minute conversation in person.

What to expect? Gen Z’ers (like Gen Y’ers) value impacting results and like rewards and recognition. They’ve been overprotected, over- socialized and over- stimulated, so create opportunities for frequent task changes, chances to show expertise and gently stretch skills, and constructive social networking options. Expect to direct work in bite-sized pieces and to specify results. Expect to repeat directions. Expect parallel careers and multiple, simultaneous jobs. Expect to teach soft skills and be astounded by technology skills. Expect to create new career growth avenues. Expect to be challenged- and expect to be better for it!