MODERN BUSINESS EVOLUTION

Millennials & Gen Z: The Game Changers

The digital age of accessible information brought ground-breaking changes to how we live our everyday lives, the way we communicate, and the dynamic pace of change we are expected to keep up with. Looking back at the history and the previous generations, from the cradle to the grave- not much would change.

If the Boomers and Gen X thought the 20th century was a rollercoaster of space flight, colour television and flip phone- the 21st century is a remarkable metamorphosis. The entire spectrum of subtitles and far-reaching changes proved to be axiomatically indispensable. From the perspective of conducting business in the global economy- standing still means moving backwards. Whilst tailored suits, shiny lease cars, office environments, business cards, and proper handshakes still matter, they are far removed from the primary expectations of a modern business and the very definition of success.

The Millennials (born 1981- 1996) and especially Gen Z (born 1997-2012) brought and will continue to bring immense disruption to business and job markets within the next decade. Corporations must adjust to their employees, consumers and influencers, who outright reject the old status symbols and genuinely want to make a positive difference in the world. Creativity, environment, cultural diversity, empathy, and work-life balance are amongst the most important aspects of Millennials and Gen Z life. Often branded as ‘snowflakes’, privileged and over-sensitive by the older generations, the derogatory undertone doesn’t seem to faze or startle them. Their heads might be in the clouds, but the gravity is firmly centred on moving away from the old world.

There is a lot to be learned and some things unlearned, to put this simply into a business etiquette term. Having chameleon-like skills, being well informed on social issues, and the ability to communicate on all levels are at the very top of my list. Traditional formalities are a small fraction of the overall picture when conducting and communicating in business, reserved for the highest level of governments and conventional corporate structures. However, social awareness, commitment to sustainability, diversity, equality, and inclusion are the driving force behind modern business etiquette on a large scale.

At times, the change, as it’s always been, maybe challenging and uncomfortable, but it’s very rarely unnecessary. Depending on where you are in the business spectrum of today’s modern society, the landscape has shifted for both employees and employers. The most evident proof of this is the global reaction to the current conflict in Europe. This is a prime example of a centuries-old, traditionally profit-orientated culture turning its backs on injustice, aggression and suffering of innocent people. An overwhelming proportion of corporations across the globe choose to do the right thing at a very high cost of profit. This unorthodox move is intensely welcomed, encouraged and supported by large populations worldwide, who refuse to ignore this deplorable abuse. Companies rapidly transform and gain lifelong loyal customers, consumers, business partners, and employees.

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Writer by Anastasia MARTEL, Etiquette and Protocol Specialist

08 May 2022, United Kingdom 

Category: Business Etiquette 

Reference: AM08052022BE   

Photography: Bryan-goff

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