Through a presentation with the National Association of College and Employers, Allie Danziger, the CEO and Co-Founder, and Joy Haugen, the Director of Professional Services at ampersand shared great tips for Gen Z to find the right career for them. I thought these tips would be perfect to share considering the Career Fair coming up this Thursday, March 24 from 10am to 1pm at the Campus Center Courtyard and Mall!
Personally, I am so incredibly in such utter denial that I am a member of Gen Z. Being born in 2001, I always wished to be able to call myself a millennial, but I have come to embrace the Gen Z status with (some) pride. My boss at my HR internship calls me the team’s Gen Z representative and asks me to look at projects with my fresh “Gen Z eyes,” and while it makes me chuckle, it also makes me feel valued, and it has shown me how businesses are looking for ways to captivate the younger generation.
In their presentation, Allie and Joy talked about Gen Z being diverse, pragmatic, tech savvy, and entrepreneurial. I couldn’t agree more. I believe our generation is very adaptable, always looking for ways to make our lives easier through technology and pushing past obstacles such as Covid-19. Additionally, as a business major, I am surrounded by entrepreneurs with amazing innovative ideas. I think that’s what makes Gen Z an age group I have become increasingly proud to claim a part of.
They also explored the importance of thinking back to what you actually did in your past roles to see what you liked and didn’t like. I think this is the best way to find your passions, and I know that being specific of your work achievements in your prior roles is great for resumes.
One of the things I found most interesting about the presentation was the emphasis on non-negotiables. When I used to think about the job market and applying for a job, I thought of employers having all the power and dictating measures. However, I came to realize that applying for a job is a two-way street. An interview is not just meant for an employer to get to know you, but for you to get to know the employer and company. If they don’t align with your non-negotiable core values, they’re probably not the place for you–and that’s fine! No one wants to work somewhere where they will be unhappy, and having a strong and firm set of non-negotiables ensures that you only consider workplaces that will bring value to your life.
One final takeaway I had from the presentation was that it’s so important not to think solely about the future and what impact you could make but to highlight to employers the impact you have already made. Don’t be shy about your accomplishments and think about the ways you brought value to your former company and those around you. Use this to show what makes you unique and showcase that you are someone the company would be lucky to have!
I hope these takeaways are helpful in some way for you and your Gen Z job search!
Danziger, A., & Haugen, J. (n.d.). Ampersand Captivate and Help Your Gen Z Students in Under 20 Minutes! [PowerPoint Slides]. PDF.