While Millennials Save For Trips, Gen Z Is Worried About Something Else Entirely
by Dallas Thompson
July 19, 2019 .2 min read
What do you know about Generation Z?
They are the kids that have come after millennials. You may even be one of them - born between 1996 and now. The oldest of Gen Z are now about 24, getting into the workforce and starting to earn and learn more about M-O-N-E-Y.
While Millennials, born between 1981 and 1995, have grown up being told to chase their dreams, the sky’s the limit, be anything they want to be, Gen Z had a slightly different experience.
Besides the fact that they grew up with smartphones, social media and other forms of radical tech, they were kids during the Great Recession. They witnessed their parents struggle at the hands of an economic system that failed them. This means that when it comes to jobs and money, Gen Z is looking to follow their dreams, but these dreams are born out of pragmatism and a search for security.
While millennials have been looking for purpose, building idealistic startups and figuring things out as they go, Gen Z is being defined by practicality.
Let’s take college, for example. While astonishing amounts of student debt continues to mount, Gen Z agrees that higher education is essential, but they disagree with the price tag.
According to Rave Reviews, 66% of Gen Z’ers are planning to go to college in-state to save money on tuition. When it comes to their studies, more are opting for STEM-related majors instead of the humanities, as they choose majors with job availability in mind. An engineering degree does seem like it comes with a more obvious career path than say an English major with a minor in happiness. (No shade thrown to the English majors, but you get the idea.)
While millennials have been characterized by following their passions, Gen Z is more likely to follow a paycheck. They are more likely than the previous generation to look to more corporate jobs, in contrast with millennials who are still tantalized by startups, work-life balance, a mission, ping pong tables, beer on tap, etc. In other words, Gen Z isn’t going to be sold on what kind of snacks are at the office, they want career growth, upward trajectory, and a 401K.
That being said, passion and entrepreneurship is still a part of Gen Z’s DNA.
Forty-one percent say they want to become entrepreneurs and understand that success comes from a strong work ethic. Seventy-six percent are already earning more money through part-time businesses, showing us that they don’t shy away from hard work; they embrace it.
With all this work comes money and Gen Z is saving it. After watching millennials fall into debt from student loans to credit cards, they’ve heeded these tales of caution.
According to Debt.com, more than 1/3 of Gen Z’ers expect to start saving for retirement in their 20s, and 10% have already started savings as teens. In fact, twenty-one percent had savings before they were ten. Luckily for them, they have recognized the mistakes made by the previous generation and are becoming more financially responsible and fiscally savvy as a result.
With their drive, smarts, and sensibility, Generation Z will undoubtedly change the world, and from we’ve seen so far, it looks like we will be in good hands. The kids are alright.
Dallas Thompson is a digital marketing professional with over five years of professional experience. She graduated from Boston University with a degree in communications and international relations. She currently manages the marketing for an innovative financial technology company, where she can be found writing about the markets and complaining about how she didn't buy $SNAP at $8 a share.