Enter Generation Z in your sales team
When you’re planning for your sales growth, it’s likely that you will hire the next generation of sales people. Their philosophy of being sold to is totally different to that of a Baby Boomer. All those in Generation Z (born 1995 and younger) have very little work experience in the B2B sales space. With the eldest being around 23, at best you will get a couple of years of sales experience.
The facts on Generation Z
- Generation Z (or Gen Z) is the newest generation and are typically in their early 20’s – or still at school.
- Honesty and intelligence are their 2 most important qualities in strong management.
- Most are savvy with their money. Better than those in previous generations.
- They have become health-conscious and are passionate about work-life balance.
- About 1 in 5 already make money online through sites like Etsy or Amazon!
- They spend a whopping 6 hours a day online or connected somehow.
- 61% of university students would prefer to be entrepreneurs rather than employees.
I want to cover off some ideas on how you can get the best from Generation Z, and how to keep them engaged with your business. It’s important that they are productive and adding value to your sales team.
1. Learn Generation Z
The difficulty is, they are only just entering the workforce now. As we discuss above, research shows that they are money-conscious, entrepreneurial and realistic.
Generation Z love individual challenges and unique projects – in fact, 56% want to write their own job descriptions. To keen your new team engaged, think about how you can include Gen Z in playing to their own strengths while aligning that to your company goal.
One thing that is certain is that Generation Z are completely comfortable with the digital world. They have spent money hours each day being marketed and sold to and already have a sound understanding of digital sales!
2. Communication is key
Surprisingly, the best way to communicate with Generation Z is face-to-face. You would think that text chat would be the highest, but in leaders – they expect direct honesty and intelligence in person. Generation Z have been raised in tough and unstable economic times – and they’re smarter than you think.
Because of their knowledge of current affairs and excellent respect for hard work, make sure you’re leading from the front and keeping abreast of the latest sales and marketing methodologies.
3. Offer both independence and collaboration
Millennials (born mid 80’s-late 90’s ish) are the most collaborative and keen to share – hence the tremendous growth of social media.
However, Gen Z are keen to have their own space and believe that if you want it done right – you’ve got to do it yourself. As such, think about when projects can be individual and when you’re going to have to get them together. Give out group projects but ensure individuals are responsible for certain tasks.
4. Check out your hiring process
As those in Generation Z are keen to have access to personalised roles that play to their perceived strengths, they want to show their flair, skills and personality.
“Hire for attitude, train for skill” is a classic phrase when recruiting but still stands accurate when hiring those in Gen Z.
Look at your processes and focus on video interviews, personality questions and cultural alignment. As Gen Z are highly adaptable, you’ll find that skill can be developed whereas attitude will probably remain consistent.
5. Embrace work-life balance
It’s likely that those in Gen Z are already earning money elsewhere with a side hustle. They’re also keen to watch their own diets as well as making time for leisure. It’s likely that the traditional 9-5 working day will develop into something totally different.
As a manager, you’ll have to embrace their core values – or they can (and will) go elsewhere. You can offer flexi-time, subsidised gym, company laptops – even “life-advice” like money management and getting onto the property ladder.
It’ll be an interesting journey as Generation Z meet with Millennials, Generation X and even Baby Boomers. The dynamics in the workplace will shift and it’s important to get your sales team aligned if you are looking at growing the business in a sustainable manner.
If you’re looking to add further sales talent to your team, please contact Jon Stewart on 0161 452 2322 or drop me a message on [email protected]