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Gen Zers say they hate their corporate jobs, but it may not be quite that simple

Andrew Lloyd   

Gen Zers say they hate their corporate jobs, but it may not be quite that simple
  • Gen Z has been vocal online about their issues with 9-to-5 work, often going viral as a result.
  • But data suggests Gen Z began 2023 pretty satisfied with their jobs.

Gen Z has been particularly vocal about their problems with working life in 2023, sharing their corporate qualms on TikTok and finding plenty of support from their peers, but data suggests the younger generation may actually be pretty satisfied with their jobs overall.

In recent months, some young workers have posted tearful reactions to their first roles out of college, discovering the realities of a corporate job. One even shared how they quit corporate life altogether after a few months.

These videos often receive millions of views and thousands of comments, many of which are from users who say they can relate to the same issues.


im also getting sick leave me alone im emotional ok i feel 12 and im scared of not having time to live

♬ original sound - BRIELLE

This comes at a time when younger workers are rejecting the notion of climbing the corporate ladder as it comes with more responsibility for little reward, and one in three Gen Zers say they want to work for themselves, according to an Instagram survey.

While many of these videos went viral throughout the year, Gen Zers have been railing against corporate norms — especially those set by millennials and Gen Xers — for some time.

But the picture may not be as bleak as it seems — despite these well-publicized complaints, the majority of Gen Zers started the year happy with their working roles.

In February, the Pew Research Center gathered survey responses from 5,902 US workers, taking a closer look at the satisfaction levels among young workers.

The survey found that 44% of those aged between 18 and 29 years old were extremely to very satisfied with their job overall, while 41% were somewhat satisfied, leaving just 15% who were either not too satisfied, or not at all content with their role.

Over 60% of the age bracket was very satisfied with their relationships with co-workers and supervisors too, with close to half reporting they were happy with their day-to-day tasks, employee benefits, and work-related feedback.

It's worth noting that these young workers, which encompass Gen Z and the youngest millennials, were still less happy with their roles when compared with older generations, with the level of satisfaction increasing as the age brackets went up. Young workers were also more likely than older generations to speak negatively about their jobs.

The same survey also found that less than a third of the youngest group polled were extremely satisfied with how much they were paid, and the opportunities for promotion that came their way.

This could speak to why popular trends like quiet quitting and bare minimum Mondays are also thriving, as some Gen Zers have established ways to put less effort into their careers without totally leaving their roles.

Although it's possible that satisfaction levels dropped over the course of 2023, it's unlikely to be as drastic as the hugely popular TikTok videos make it seem.

That said, while the data suggests that social media trends don't always tell the full story and aren't necessarily representative of the generation as a whole, the online pushback against workplace norms shows no signs of slowing down either.

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