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Shaking up the Business World: Generation Z & Finances

Born after 1995 and growing up in a world of ubiquitous Internet, diverse ethnic groups and blurred gender roles, GenZers live online as much as offline. They function well with their attention divided between several focus points simultaneously and their world is in a constant “on” mode – an open-all-hours, access-all-areas approach to life that they expect you to adapt to.

Having limited financial resources and being aware of the past 10+ years of financial upheavals, GenZers have become extremely careful about spending money. They have the lowest average balance and lowest average credit card debt of all current generations. This is best seen in their consideration of college costs: a large percentage of GenZers plan to work while in college and expect to use personal savings to help pay for it.

GenZers fiscal responsibility and dedication to work and creativity mean they are go-getters from the very start. Studies show that over 2/3 of GenZers aged 14 to 21 are already earning their own money through jobs that range from the classic-for-their-age babysitting to full-on self-employed jobs such as giving music lessons. This trend has given birth to a new term: teenpreneurs.

Motivated by growth and passion but also aware of the many obstacles in front of them, including lack of capital, lack of knowledge on how to adequately market their products or services and drawing in clients, and lack of entrepreneurial skills, GenZers have made use of all the benefits of the Internet to network with their peers and to spread the know-how in unprecedented ways. Organizing workshops and conferences which provide them with the opportunity to share their experiences with each other and learn from both their peers and from the more experienced entrepreneurs. And they learn everything: from accounting and communication to branding. They consider these skills and knowledge will be useful in the future, regardless of what profession they end up in.

Self-sufficient entrepreneurship and social impact are what this generation values most. A continual online presence and living under the scrutiny of social media have made them aware of the importance of community and have also resulted in their views of communication being many ways different from those of previous generations, making them into one to be reckoned with.

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