Updated: Mar 25
Gen Z parents will raise children that are entrepreneurial, digital first, social innovation inclined.
When Gen Z becomes parents, what will life be like for their kids? This topic is one that hasn't been widely discussed, but will become important in the very near future. Therefore, I decided that it would be valuable to dive into the dynamics of Gen Z parenting.
The Entrepreneurial Household
Gen Z-ers are incredibly entrepreneurial individuals. According to the most recent statistics, 41% of Gen Z-ers plan to become entrepreneurs, 72% of high school students want to start their own company in the future, and 61% of college students would rather be entrepreneurs than employees. Therefore, it is entirely clear that the Gen Z parent will serve as a source of encouragement for their kids to pursue their ideas and thoughts in an actionable manner, rather than waving them off as childhood dreams. This will have implications for the next generation of children after Gen Z, who will be wired with the concept of innovation and creativity as key in terms of career prospects, and who will demote the notion of working under the purview of a controlling corporation.
Education and Career Expectations
The previous point leads me into the discussion about Gen Z's career expectations for their children. Traditionally, the Gen X/Baby Boomer parent would expect their child to enroll in university, get a degree, and hop onto the corporate bandwagon. However, the Gen Z parent will not advise this approach for their child. Gen Z understands the importance of education; however, because of the incredible volatility that the digital economy will bring, and the various new industries that will appear thanks to digitalization, Gen Z recognizes that a degree earned yesterday might become obsolete tomorrow. Instead, there will be an emphasis on dynamic skills, all of which the Gen Z parent will encourage their child to learn digitally (online). Right now, Gen Z is already making great use of YouTube, Coursera, Khan Academy, and more to learn important skills that are simply not administered in a college setting. The same will apply to the next generation of children, and Gen Z will encourage this type of learning. Moreover, as alluded to earlier, Gen Z will not expect their children to pursue corporate careers, but rather, to truly pursue their passions and make an impact in the world.
Unlike previous generations that shunned the use of technology in the house as a "distraction away from family time," Gen Z parents will encourage their children to utilize the latest technologies from IoT to AI, and learn alongside them as well. Because Gen Z was born into an era of digital transformation (the early 2000s and the coming of the internet and social networks), and because their children will also be experiencing a similar wave of digitalization, Gen Z parents will be able to understand the digital shift that their children are undergoing as a result of their previous experience. This means that for the first time in history, families will gather beside a "digital fireplace" (i.e–gaming experiences, AR/VR, AI-driven at-home experiences), and parent and child will finally speak the same language. Hence, there will be no digital divide in the Gen Z household.
Making a positive impact on the world is a key principle for Gen Z. Therefore, Gen Z parents will expect their children to participate in social impact causes that will help elevate society and promote a true human-centric digital framework. Gen Z will also raise their children to understand the benefit of social impact and how it serves as a feedback mechanism as part of the "support economy" in which human welfare is prioritized.