This week our club learned about the differences between “our” workplace and the characteristics of “homelanders” (those born after the creation of the Department of Homeland Security) or Gen Z that are entering the workplace. Our speaker, Tim Knapp, has been an educator for the last 25 years in the Hampton Roads area, mentoring students to strive for their full potential in life. Tim’s goal has been to help students achieve their first dream of graduating from high school so they have all the opportunities to pursue their chosen path in life. Tim shared his experience helping teenagers grow over their high school years into adults who are ready to take on the challenges of the world. We learned these young adults have strong beliefs in what they think the world should look like and will go out to fight for these ideals but struggle as most of us do with the inner conflicts of self-doubt and negativity. We all understand the world is a changing place that needs employers, but they must be prepared to guide their workforce through the challenges facing it today.

As an educator, Tim has taught Personal Finance since 2014 and shared his insights on young adults transitioning into the work world where there seems to be a gap of understanding, thus creating stress between business leaders and young employees. “This gap needs to be understood better by those who lead to help their people grow in their workspace as individuals that will help their companies and organizations change the world,” said Knapp.

The three takeaways we learned were:

  1. Young people want to work, but there needs to be a vision or mission they can rally behind.
  2. Young people want to work smarter, not harder.
  3. Young people need to find trust and respect in their leaders to be successful.

Thank you, Tim, for sharing your firsthand insights on the up-and-coming members of tomorrow’s workforce!