Survey: 9 in 10 Gen Z Employees Say They Experience Social Anxiety at Work

Survey: 9 in 10 Gen Z Employees Say They Experience Social Anxiety at Work

Survey: 9 in 10 Gen Z Employees Say They Experience Social Anxiety at Work

Survey: 9 in 10 Gen Z Employees Say They Experience Social Anxiety at Work

Survey: 9 in 10 Gen Z Employees Say They Experience Social Anxiety at Work

The book on Gen Z members (generally regarded as those born between 1997 and 2012) is that they are pragmatic, confident, values-driven, and more than capable of setting and enforcing boundaries in a manner that surprises — and sometimes shocks — members of older generations.

Survey Findings

But there is more to Gen Z that meets the eye (or text message). According to the ZetaPulse Gen Z Workforce Study from global learning platform Kahoot!, 90% of Gen Z employees admit that they experience social anxiety at work. Among them:

  • 14% said they experience social anxiety in the workplace on a daily basis.
  • 21% said they experience social anxiety in the workplace most days.
  • 21% said they experience social anxiety in the workplace half the time.
  • 34% said they experience social anxiety in the workplace some days.

Common Triggers of Social Anxiety at Work

The study also found that the work-related scenarios and activities most likely to trigger social anxiety are:

  • Asking for a raise (48%)
  • Being asked or expected to make a presentation (44%)
  • Being asked unexpectedly to share their opinions in meetings (38%)
  • Feeling compelled to ask — or think of asking — a disruptive colleague to be quiet (36%)
  • Requesting vacation days (25%)
  • When they are asked to help a colleague with a task or project (13%)
  • When they are asked about their weekend (9%)

Strategies to Address Social Anxiety

As for measures and strategies to address their social discomfort, Gen Z members said that they would benefit from:

  • Having a non-judgmental and safe workspace (53%)
  • Getting soft skills training in areas like communication, leadership, and negotiation (42%)
  • Peer-based learning (36%)
  • Getting dedicated work time for self-directed learning (34%)
  • Job rotations to obtain more diverse skills (30%)
  • Access to knowledge repositories or internal learning resources (27%)
  • Access to a dedicated mentor (16%)

Employer’s Role in Addressing Social Anxiety at Work

“Employers need to place soft skills advancement at the top of their priorities list while also experimenting with innovative, quick, and real approaches to communication and training which are mindful of their social discomfort,” said James Micklethwait, VP of Kahoot! “All organizations are full of hidden talents and knowledge. It’s time for employers to tap into this valuable resource by facilitating peer-to-peer learning and encouraging their Gen Z employees to create engaging, interactive learning sessions, presentations, or even courses to challenge their team members and share their knowledge and skills.”

Sources

Kahoot! – ZetaPulse Gen Z Workforce Study

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