Every generation faces a skeptical reception in the labor force. Baby boomers were called self-centered, Gen X was lazy and millennials were considered entitled. For Gen Z, it's the same - but different. When I was at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, last week, there was the normal buzz about economic conditions and climate change. But everyone I spoke with mainly wanted to talk about something else: How the pandemic has changed the labor market, and especially how it has affected Gen Z.
Young people have never entered the labor force with more power - unemployment is low and the demand for labor is high - and they are exercising that power by changing workplace norms. The good times may not last, though, and Gen Z could wind up being the ones who pay the bigger price.