For about a decade, Millennials have monopolized headlines. Those hip, urban-dwelling, ride-sharing, persistent social networkers have had everyone’s attention because they are 80 million strong. To top that off, they have a purchasing power on par with the greatest generation of this country’s history – the baby boomers.
While marketers and conglomerates fawn over Millennials, a new generation is quickly moving into the spotlight.
They’re simply known as Generation Z – young people born after 1995. This upcoming generation makes up a quarter of the current population. They’ve seen what a recession can do to an economy and they’ve mastered new technologies because they were born with them in hand. Some are predicting that next wave of young adults might be the start of an improved fiscal reality.
“They’re growing up in a post-recession world,” O’Connell says. “Millenials entered the workforce in the thick of the recession. Millenials and Gen-Xers and even Baby Boomers all had to adapt to the post-recession reality in the moment.”
But Gen Z is coming of age in this world, O’Connell says. “A world where you don’t stay at the same job for 40-plus years. A world where a college degree isn’t necessarily a guarantee of a good job when you graduate,” she says.
It’s a world where retirement is a shifting and evolving reality, she says: “Their approach – as even teenagers – is much more practical and intentional with their spending.”
Listen to the full interview in the audio player above.