Rebecca is 17. She connects with her friends on Snapchat, daydreams about being 18, doesn’t know a world without Google, values her online privacy and wants to own her own business - Rebecca is a fairly typical Gen Z-er.
The “If you want it done right, then do it yourself” generation.
It’s fair enough if you haven’t heard much about Generation Z, with all the media focus on Millennials, little light has been shone on the tribe peeking right behind. And amongst this group of teens-twenties (born 1996 - 2010) is an army of budding Founders and Entrepreneurs who are gonna do some pretty big things!
This is where our ears prick up.
While the Z generation are still a fairly mysterious bunch, enough evaluation has determined them to be one of the most entrepreneurial generations, and it’s obvious to see why.
While Generation Y struggle to pay back over $15.3 billion of New Zealand’s student loan debt, Generation Z have their sights on creating their own companies in order to live life on their terms.
This generation have also grown up witnessing start-up companies transform into giant unicorns fairly quickly, whether it be local businesses such as Trade Me and Xero or Mark Zuckerberg in his hoodie and sneakers promoting Facebook. Gone are the days of wanting to be a Dishy, when running a start-up looks so appealing.
It has also never been easier for young people to start a business simply because information is available to them. The information age has brought down traditional rules around climbing a career ladder, allowing motivated and resourceful people to build their own businesses, including those who are especially young.
So they’ve got the internet, but do they have the support?
With advances in technology going the way they are (up and really fast) it’s clear that the world that Generation Z will be working in needs to be one in which they’re supported and encouraged so they feel equipped to do some really cool stuff.
Before we break into song about how “we believe the children are the future”, BizDojo has long been about seeing New Zealand populated by empowered founders, which will soon be full of these driven and talented Gen Z-ers.
Last year did our bit to support this budding generation of leaders by taking part in YES, a weekend-long mentoring programme in Wellington and creating ‘The BizDojo Lounge’ at Festival for the future in Auckland. Through both these programmes, we mentored and got to know some pretty inspiring young adults, who were all passionate to grow their ideas and take the path less travelled.
What kind of businesses are they building?
We’re gonna see a lot more Social Enterprises. Much like their Millennial siblings, Gen Z-ers want to see that the work they are doing is meaningful. With news instantly accessible, Gen Z-ers are fully aware of social issues and want to have an active part in the solution.
Surveys of this generation have also found that businesses that focus on increasing human connection will be common. Generation Z value an immediate connection, whether it’s to goods, services or other people. When they want something they want it fast so expect to see more apps and platforms which focus on speed and connection to get things done.
Want to get involved?
Here are some of the amazing initiatives around New Zealand which are helping young adults get into Entrepreneurship;
Victoria Entrepreneur Bootcamp
BizDojo has sponsored the Vic Bootcamp for four years now. Each year we get to host a new cohort of amazing humans who dedicate their summer to build a business.
Festival for the Future
An initiative ran by BizDojo Residents ‘Inspiring Stories’, FFTF celebrates what’s possible. Connect, be inspired, and grow your ideas with young innovators from across the nation.
They host programmes for young people to discover their potential in business and in life.