7 March 2024

1 Out of 4 Gen Z Employees Feel Lonely at Work

By Ronald Smith

Did you know that a lot of Gen Z employees, like me, feel lonely at work? It’s true! Loneliness is affecting us at a higher rate compared to other age groups. In fact, a recent survey by Wildgoose found that nearly one in four, or 23%, of respondents from our generation feel lonely at work. That’s a big increase of 130% from the same survey conducted in 2017. And what’s even more surprising is that 44% of us don’t have any friends in the workplace.

This data comes from a survey conducted by Wildgoose, which asked 1,052 companies about workplace friendships and happiness in 2021.

Why Gen Zers Feel Lonelier at Work

So, why do we Gen Zers feel so lonely at work? Well, there are a few reasons. Firstly, the way we work has changed a lot, especially because of the pandemic. Many of us are now working remotely, which can make it harder to form friendships and connections with our colleagues. It’s not easy to build relationships when you’re not physically in the same office.

And let’s not forget about the challenges brought on by COVID-19. The pandemic has created a lot of uncertainty and stress for all of us, including Gen Z employees. The changes and disruptions it has caused in our lives can definitely contribute to feelings of isolation and loneliness.

So, if you’re a Gen Z employee feeling lonely at work, you’re not alone. Many of us are going through the same thing. It’s important to remember that reaching out and connecting with others, even if it’s in a virtual setting, can make a big difference. We’re all in this together!

I find it really difficult to get to know new coworkers when I’m working from home. Did you know that almost 10% of us Gen Z workers started a new job in the past year and still haven’t made any friends at work? That’s a lot higher than the number for other groups in the survey. With more companies adopting a hybrid work model, it’s important for decision-makers and HR teams to focus on building stronger connections among colleagues.

Jonny Edser, the managing director at Wildgoose, put it perfectly when he said, Starting a new job without meeting your coworkers must be really tough. Companies need to understand that in-person social events are crucial, especially when people have been lacking social interaction in their daily lives.

What the Survey Tells Us

Did you know that having a work best friend can make your job more enjoyable? That’s what more than half of the people, or 57% of them, say. Not only that, but 21% also feel more creative when they have a close friend at work. Surprisingly, only 40% of the respondents say they actually have a best friend at work, and 15% of them wish they had one.

So, how can we improve our relationships with our colleagues? Well, according to 46% of the respondents, going out for drinks after work once a month is the best way. Another option is to plan a team-building weekend away, which 21% of the respondents prefer. For some people, playing sports together once a month is a great bonding activity, and 14% of them agree. And let’s not forget about virtual team-building activities, which 6% of the respondents find helpful.

Having Fun with Colleagues

According to Edser, having fun with colleagues is very important. He says, For many people, what’s been missing is the chance to have fun with colleagues, rather than just focusing on work.

When we come together and do activities that are not work-related, it helps us all reconnect. Wildgoose is really good at creating team-building and social events that are fun and interactive. They even have virtual team-building options for when we can’t be together in person because of the lockdown.

Feeling Happy at Work

We all know that when we’re happy, we get more done. But there are still debates and studies about how to measure employee happiness. It seems like there’s no one answer.

But what Wildgoose’s survey tells us is that keeping our team engaged is the key. It doesn’t matter if we’re working together in the office or all spread out across the world. We can use technology to build new relationships and strengthen the ones we already have.

Whether it’s through virtual introductions or remote events, it’s important for businesses of all sizes to encourage their employees to connect. When we have strong relationships, it helps us work better together and overcome challenges.