In a Gen Z-led organisation, everybody is an equal. Managers should not see themselves as decision-makers, but as information integrators, decision facilitators and coordinators of collaboration between teams of teams. “Leadership will become invisible,” Victor, a senior innovation manager who works closely with Gen Z, told me.
This means a final farewell to authoritarian, bureaucratic or top-down leaders who think of team members as subordinates and impart orders.
A Gen Z manager will seek to be a reliable guide, coach – even friend, who will create a safe space where differences are encouraged, where team members at all levels can bounce ideas fast, and where even the most junior employees are able to influence decisions.
Where mentorship is seen as peer support, an exchange of experience and information, and a learning opportunity for all sides. And of course, where a lot more emphasis is placed on mental health, happiness, work-life balance and flexibility.
But don’t mistake Gen Z leaders for being soft. They will expect accountability and the ability to provide and receive constructive feedback all the time.
They seek loyalty and trust, want open-minded teammates who will learn and try new things, and expect open communication and mutual respect.
“We do expect people to show up and do what they have committed to within the agreed timeframe,” Glory, a Gen Z student told me. “We are interested everyone’s ideas, whether we agree with them or not. Similarly, we expect people in the team to remain open and receptive to feedback and new ways of working.” she said.