Embracing the Next Generation for your Nonprofit and Duck Race

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Here are a few things to know about embracing the next generation for your nonprofit and duck race and how generation Z can benefit your nonprofit organization.  Is your nonprofit ready for Generation Z?  This generation, also referred to as the Founders Generation coined by MTV, is anyone born after 1995 following the Millennial Generation. Approximately ¼ of America’s population belongs to Generation Z and although this generation are still teenagers,

Embracing GenZ and how they can benefit your nonprofit and Derby Duck Race 

Embracing the next generation for your nonprofit and duck race - digital in GenZ's DNA

Technology and Internet

Generation Z is the “5 Screen Generation” meaning they are consistently multitasking  over five electronic screens: TV, phone, laptop, desktop, and music players. On the other hand, Millennials mostly use two screens at a time: phone and computer. Generation Z grew up in a world where computers and internet were already available. Because of this, they are tech-savvy and reliant on devices.  It has been surveyed that 41% of Generation Z’s spend more than three hours per day on their computers for non-schoolwork related purposes. They are also more likely to turn to social media for research and content.  It is said that 26% of Generation Z’s large social circles (online friends) live out of state which opens a whole new network and connections for your nonprofit and Derby Duck Race.


Learned from the Millennials’ Struggles

This generation also grew up in a post 9/11 world during a recession. They’ve witnessed the struggles Millennials had to experience financially and emotionally. Because of this they tend to be more financially conservative and are great with budgeting. This is another great asset to have in your nonprofit organization. They have also observed from the Millennials that traditional choices with education don’t always guarantee success in which 30% of high school students today are pushing back their graduation date to spend more time learning in order to get into a university.

Another statistic about this generation is that 1 in 2 Generation Z’s will be university educated compared to 1 in 3 Millennials and 1 in 4 Generation X’s. They also have different experiences in politics, media, communication, telecommunications, music, entertainment, etc. bringing a whole new, fresh perspective to your nonprofit. It is important to remember that they aren’t just like the Millennials but a whole new group with their own ideas.


Motivated to Learn and Advance in their Careers

Generation Z isn’t interested in working in corporate America. Instead, their interests lie in learning, advancing, and working in unique cultures. This is where nonprofits can take advantage of having a unique workplace structure and environment. About 1/3 of Generation Z’s motivation is opportunities for advancement compared to the Millennial Generation where 38% of those surveyed are more motivated by money. Thus, Generation Z’s focus is on moving up the ladder than having a big paycheck.

A total of 72% of high school students who were surveyed said they wanted to start a business rather than work in a high, well-paying position for someone else. Since Generation Z’s have been surrounded by DIY education and crowdsourcing, they feel the pressure to gain professional experience at a very young age making them great entrepreneurs. This way of thinking and strive allow Generation Z’s to eventually lead departments and organizations at an early age.



Since Generation Z’s motivation is wanting to advance in their careers, they start in any position they can. For nonprofits, it’s with volunteering. Currently 26% of 16-19 year-olds are volunteering and although they are young and starting out, Generation Z’s are forward thinking and want organizations to give them support and allow opportunities for them to speak up and have a voice within the organization. Hear their opinions and listen to their ideas. They have a lot of free time are want to pitch in and help social causes they are passionate about. Generation Z’s are more likely to volunteer for your organization if they feel they can connect with it on a personal level. Include their age range in stories and volunteer pitches to make your organization more appealing to them.


Connecting with Generation Z

There are several ways to connect with this tech-savvy generation. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • This generation prefers to talk face-to-face. Try to avoid over using email for communication and if you do, try to be visual with your message.
  • Take advantage of their curiosity and their motivation to learn. Allow them to do projects, ask for their opinions, and treat them as knowledgeable teammates. Just because they are young doesn’t mean they won’t have useful input that can help your organization.
  • Help them learn and grow. Generation Z’s thrive to be experts. This is a great opportunity to mentor your Generation Z employees and volunteers and show them the ropes. Help them build the skills they are looking for. Collaborate with them and help them collaborate with others.
  • Be honest with them. 52% of Generation Z’s say that honesty is the most important quality for being a good leader.
  • Make sure your website and emails are mobile friendly. Having your nonprofit’s story extend across multiple screens is key to attract Generation Z.

Involving this upcoming generation can really help your nonprofit. Your Duck Race provides an opportunity for Generation Z to learn about your organization. In addition, this generation can learn about sponsorships, interpersonal skills, marketing and more! These are all skills Generation Z are looking to learn and become an expert in. Your nonprofit can really benefit from Generation Z’s creativity, enthusiasm, technology knowledge, and entrepreneurial spirit.

Additional Sources: EntrepreneurMashableNonprofit HubBeth’s BlogAllegiance