01 December, 2022

New International Research Reveals the Skills and Attitudes Gen Z Thinks Are Necessary to Succeed in the ‘Game of Life’

New International Research Reveals the Skills and Attitudes Gen Z Thinks Are Necessary to Succeed in the ‘Game of Life’-gen-z-Generation Z

Research published by Nord Anglia Education shows that 1 in 2 Gen Z’ers think confidence – the knowledge that you're capable of handling whatever challenges life throws at you – is the most important skill for their personal and professional lives.

Nord Anglia commissioned independent research amongst 18–25-year-old Gen Z’ers living in the UK, USA, and India to better understand the key skills they view as crucial for success. Gen Z was chosen because they are the most recent generation to enter higher education or begin working in a world impacted by the pandemic and economic uncertainty.

As one Gen Z respondent said, “Life constantly throws curveballs at us. It’s inevitable. But it’s how we react to a situation that matters.”

Which skills does Gen Z see as important at work?

When it comes to having a successful career, Gen Z’ers think the following skills and attitudes are the most important:

  1. Confidence (51%)
  2. Resilience (44%)
  3. Team spirit (43%)
  4. Problem solving and critical thinking (38%)
  5. Mental and physical wellbeing (35%)

“In today’s workplace, especially for women, confidence in yourself is essential to have your ideas heard,” one Gen Z’er said. Commenting on why resilience is important, another Gen Z’er summed it up as: “It’s about being able to keep going when it’s hard.”

The pandemic and Gen Z

According to the Gen Z’ers who took part in the research, the pandemic has meant that these attitudes are the most important to have in life:

  1. ‘Looking after my wellbeing’: the ability to know myself and what works best for me to help look after my mental and physical health
  2. ‘The importance of empathy’: understanding and sympathizing with others’ experiences
  3. ‘Having a global outlook’: understanding and appreciating what’s happening in the world around me
  4. ‘Problem solving and critical thinking’
  5. ‘Understanding or being self-aware of how I learn best and why’

When it comes to the importance of wellbeing, one Gen Z’er said, “The last few years have taught everyone that putting yourself first is important because burnout is extremely real.”

“If I can't look after my mental health, I won’t accomplish anything long term,” said another.

Dr Elise Ecoff, Nord Anglia Education’s Group Education Director, said: “It doesn’t matter if a Gen Z’er grew up in London, New York or Mumbai, their needs and wants are similar when it comes to leading a happy and rewarding personal and work life. This underlines why our approach to education sees us helping students develop their confidence, wellbeing, creativity, resilience and much more, alongside great academic results. These are all skills and attitudes that’ll help young people succeed at whatever they choose to do or be in life, and ones that we’re seeing Millennial parents want for their children too.”

About the research

The research was commissioned by Nord Anglia Education and carried out online by Kantar, the world's leading data, insights, and consulting company, amongst a sample of 1,548 Gen Z’ers (adults aged 18-25, with no gender quotas) in the UK, USA, and India, during June 2022. The research focused on skills beyond academic results.