Analyzing and interpreting the complex interplay between Gen Z and the themes of Technology, Climate Change, and Sustainability a latest report titled, ‘Unveiling Tomorrow: Empowering Gen Z in a Changing World’ from BML Munjal University (BMU) says Gen Z’s wellness app usage is on the upswing, reflecting their tech-savvy nature and emphasis on well-being.
The report is based on a survey of 700 Gen Z individuals across India and 20 in-depth interviews with industry experts and Secondary research from academic journals, industry reports, articles, and white papers, to understand Gen Z behaviour and attitudes.
Fitness apps and social media for well-being support are popular among them, underlining their holistic approach to health with 48% emphasizing the importance of mental and emotional well-being as per the survey. Gen Z, as a digitally forward generation prioritizes holistic wellness and redefines wellness as holistic, covering physical, mental, and social well-being, prioritizing mental health, relationships, and care access. This suggests that Gen Z is taking a more informed approach to their eating habits and is looking for food companies that they can trust. 74% (40.4% strongly agree and 33.6% agree) of Gen Z are looking for food companies that are transparent about their product’s health benefits.
Gen Z is more likely to be interested in beauty brands that champion body positivity and self-acceptance over conventional beauty standards. They prefer sustainable, ethical, and inclusive products and services. They are championing the cause of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) in the workplace. They seamlessly integrate technology but grapple with stress and anxiety, mainly due to a fear of failure and a preference for digital communication.
The report was released at the fourth annual BRIJ Leadership Summit on October 6, 2023. On the other two themes in the report, the summary is as follows:
Gen Z and Technology
Gen Z places significant value on technology’s ease of use and accessibility, advocating for its integration to enhance learning experiences, particularly emphasizing game-based learning. They prioritize sustainability and tech accessibility, requiring strategic engagement for innovation.
The survey findings offer valuable insights into the mindset of Gen Z. When it comes to technology, an impressive 65% of Gen Z individuals believe that AI will play a substantial role in various aspects of human life, and 33% foresee its influence on society in the future. However, there’s a significant concern among 44% of respondents about how AI might lead to uncertainties in job markets and potential job displacement due to rapid technological advancements. Ethical considerations and privacy issues also weigh on the minds of 28.7% of participants. Most notably, a substantial 62.8% of Gen Z respondents express genuine worry about AI potentially disrupting traditional job roles and employment stability, underlining the importance of educational reforms and AI-related courses to prepare them for the changing job landscape. On the other hand, the fear of AI leading to substantial workforce disruptions and subsequent unemployment is a significant issue, indicating the need for comprehensive strategies to address and mitigate these concerns. This anxiety underscores the critical call for educational reforms, particularly the integration of more AI-related courses and programs, as highlighted by 47.4% of respondents.
There’s a palpable fear among Gen Z about AI displacing traditional jobs, highlighting the need for proactive strategies, including comprehensive education reforms, mentorship, and balancing tech advancement with job preservation. Data privacy and ethical tech use are also vital for a responsible tech-driven society.
Gen Z and Climate Change
Gen Z is maturing in a world where climate change is an immediate and urgent concern, significantly shaping their beliefs, behaviours, and activism. Early awareness and the drive to work towards a better future in Gen Z can be attributed to childhood sensitization.
In an interesting finding around climate change, the survey highlights that approximately 50% of respondents are significantly concerned about this pressing issue, with 33% expressing moderate concern and a minority showing no apprehension. Effective climate change measures endorsed by respondents include transitioning to renewable energy sources, stricter emissions regulations, investment in sustainable infrastructure and transportation, sustainable agriculture promotion, and climate change awareness. Furthermore, a remarkable 40.2% of Gen Z individuals are willing to actively support environmentally sustainable companies, indicating a growing awareness and commitment to addressing climate change and sustainability.
Gen Z’s proactive approach to sustainability and impact on corporate sustainability initiatives and their role in fostering a culture of sustainability within organizations are central themes that emerge from these dialogues, showcasing their transformative potential in the long run.
Motivational Talk by Siddharth Shah, Co-founder and CEO of API Holdings and PharmEasy
Siddharth Shah, who was the main keynote speaker at the annual BRIJ Leadership Summit at the BMU, Gurgaon, graphically talked about his own career journey and how failures actually helped him turn what he is today, a very successful and innovative entrepreneur in the country. He acknowledged how a project work at IIM A set him on the path of entrepreneurship, family support and also recounted the mistakes and risks which made his roller-coaster journey a lesson. “In the journey of entrepreneurship and in life, we often encounter challenges and situations that make you feel like the end of the world. But it’s crucial to remember that failure is the cornerstone of success. It’s our passion, perseverance, and the ability to pivot that turn these failures into stepping stones to greatness. Embrace failure, learn from it, and never make the same mistake twice. With dedication and a relentless spirit, you can transform setbacks into success stories. So, keep your fire burning, and remember, even in the darkest moments, there’s always a light at the end of the tunnel.”