Introducing Generation Z

The post-millennials.  The 2Ks.  The iGens.  The Plurals.  The Homeland Generation.  The Silent Generation.

They are known by many names.  But this latest demographic group targeted by advertisers and marketers (born between the mid-1990s and the mid-2000s) are today’s teenagers.  Raised on the Internet and social media, they have fewer verbal and interpersonal skills.  And they will be Agilent’s next generation of customers and employees.

New York PR firm Sparks & Honey recently posted a thought-provoking profile of Generation Z.  Among its findings and predictions about Gen-Z:

  • They have an 8-second attention span (Millennials have a 12-second attention span)
  • They are unconstrained by traditional gender roles
  • They are racially diverse and mixed
  • They are less physically active and more likely to be obese
  • They are smart, confident, competitive and entrepreneurial
  • They want to have an impact on the environment and the planet

Growing up in the post-Information Age, Gen-Zers are the beneficiaries of the past century of electronics.  “Scientists a hundred years ago could not have imagined what we have today,” says Agilent President and CEO Bill Sullivan.  “We have seen dramatic innovations and changes in electronics technologies: the invention of the transistor, the development of integrated circuits and the rise of wireless communications.”

But Sullivan believes that this young generation will see an even more dramatic revolution: the century of biology.  “I believe that biology will transform the next 100 years of human life even more than electronics transformed the past 100 years,” he said last year to an audience of engineering students at the University of California, Berkeley.

“Agilent today has world-class capabilities in cost-effectively synthesizing very high-quality DNA and RNA.  Using our solutions, scientists may soon be able to isolate the genomic changes that lead to Down syndrome, autism, cancer and other diseases.

“But the century of biology will not be limited to life sciences and diagnostics.  We are on the verge of being able to engineer biology much as we do with electrical devices today.  This has the potential to lead to new materials, new biofuels and even new foods.

“Imagine a world that no longer runs the risk of exhausting its fuels and natural resources.  Imagine a global food supply that ensures adequate nutrition for everyone.  Imagine being able to live longer and healthier, with a higher standard of living and quality of life.”

Generation Z may be in for an amazing ride.  And with a new focus on chemicals and energy, pharmaceuticals, food safety, the environment, diagnostics and research, Agilent hopes to play a major role in making this exciting future possible.

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