The Stress of Gen Z

Frustrated Businesswoman in an Office
Type: Reading
Originally published on February 18, 2023 and last updated on May 16, 2023

Using reading comprehension exercises about topics such as “Gen Z” is a good way to initiate conversation with English learners because it allows them to practice reading, speaking, and listening skills simultaneously. It also provides a relevant and engaging topic for discussion, which can motivate learners to participate more actively in the conversation.

By practicing these skills, learners can improve their overall level of English proficiency and feel more confident in their ability to communicate in real-world situations.

Ask your students to read the following text, or listen as you read it to them. When finished check their understanding by asking the questions directly below the text before moving on to discuss the conversation questions.

What is Generation Z

Generation Z, often abbreviated as Gen Z, refers to the demographic cohort following Generation Y, also known as the Millennials. The birth years that define Generation Z vary slightly depending on the source, but generally, it includes individuals born between the mid-to-late 1990s and the mid-2010s. This means that the oldest members of Gen Z are currently in their mid-to-late 20s, and the youngest are still in their early childhood.

Generation Z is considered the first truly “digital native” generation, having grown up with technology and the internet as a constant presence in their lives. They are also known for their multiculturalism, diversity, and social awareness, having come of age during a time of rapid social and cultural change.

Are Gen Z the most stressed generation in the workplace?

Generation Z (Gen Z) workers are reportedly the most stressed and struggling the most to cope with professional life due to the “permacrisis” situation, according to a report by BBC Worklife. Cigna International Health’s 2023 survey of nearly 12,000 workers worldwide showed that 91% of workers aged 18-24 reported stress, compared to 84% on average. Nearly all respondents experienced symptoms of burnout, while 23% said their stress was unmanageable. Economic instability, including layoffs, a lack of wage growth and difficulty getting on the property ladder are among the reasons cited for Gen Z’s stress.

Read the original article from the BBC here

Answer The Questions Below To Check Your Understanding

  • What is the age range for individuals who are considered part of Generation Z?
  • What are some characteristics of Generation Z?
  • According to a report by BBC Worklife, how does the stress level of Generation Z workers compare to the average stress level of workers?

Conversation Questions

My Image
  • Do you think the current economic climate is more challenging for younger workers compared to previous generations? Why or why not?
  • Have you or anyone you know experienced stress or burnout in the workplace? How did you/they cope?
  • What are some of the factors that contribute to workplace stress and anxiety, particularly among younger workers?
  • How do you think the pandemic has impacted the mental health and well-being of workers, particularly those who are just entering the workforce?
  • What are some ways that employers and managers can support the mental health and well-being of their employees?
  • Have you ever experienced or witnessed age-related discrimination in the workplace? How can this be addressed?
  • What advice would you give to a younger worker who is struggling to cope with the demands of professional life?
  • Should employers be required to provide mental health support and resources for their employees?
  • Should schools and universities do more to prepare students for the demands of the modern workforce?
  • Is there a generational divide when it comes to attitudes towards work-life balance and professional development?
This conversation topic was prepared by Gregory

Gregory is a qualified TEFL teacher who has been teaching English as a Foreign Language (ESL) for over a decade. He has taught in-person classes in Spain and to English learners around the world online.