“I’m Taking My Meetings in Bed” — Corporate Gen-Z Behaviors Spark Debate About Laziness

"I’m a Gen Z in corporate. Why are we having a Zoom call when you could’ve sent an email?"

Mustafa Gatollari - Author
By

Feb. 19 2024, Published 8:42 a.m. ET

Gen Z Working Corporate Job

Gen-Z workers are often maligned as being lazy, unwilling to work, and entitled employees who are deluded as to what being successful entails. However, many would argue that these traits are ultimately positive ones and that Gen-Z employees (and in some instances, Millennials), are actually more cognizant of their value and willing to stand up for themselves in corporate/business settings.

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And it appears that TikToker DeAndre Brown (@imdrebrown) is one of these Gen Z employees, as he uploaded a now-viral TikTok delineating some of the corporate Gen Z behaviors folks of his generation have adopted. He references these behaviors in a viral clip on the popular social media platform that got other users sharing some of their own Gen Z corporate mannerisms.

"I'm a Gen Z in corporate of course I'm not going to that meeting that's during my lunch time. Sorry, take it off the schedule," he says while he grabs his salad in a plastic to-go container as he shakes it in front of the camera and faux-apologizes for not going above and beyond the call of duty for his job.

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Source: TikTok | @imdrebrown

It's a characteristic that he attributes to being born in a certain generation, Generation Z, i.e. folks born between 1997-2012.

"I'ma Gen Z in corporate of course the screen is hitting the keyboard at 5 o'clock on the dot," he says, pointing to a laptop before slamming it shut while shaking his head from side to side.

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In fact he says that being a Gen-Z'er might mean that folks maybe give themselves an extra half-hour break beforehand to decompress before their 5 pm end time: "Maybe even 4:30, sorry," he says.

"I'm a Gen Z in corporate," he says again in another part of the bit, posing in front of a window that appears to be in a high-rise building before going on to say: "what do you mean what is a mental health day? Figure it out because I'm taking one a month, sorry," he says, while shaking his head in an exaggerated fashion.

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gen z corporate behaviors
Source: TikTok | @imdrebrown

There's been a lot of discussions surrounding the work ethic of Gen-Z'ers — some folks who are have been "assigned" to this generation have argued that, despite the perception ascribed to them of being lazy and/or non-industrious, their ennui towards work has more to do with the fact that the current employment model isn't exactly serving her and others born around the same time in the current state of the economy.

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It's not difficult to understand the logic being offered up by TikTokers who pose arguments akin to the aforementioned ones above: today, it's officially more difficult for American citizens to afford a home than it was for people during the Great Depression.

Not only is the cost of owning a home so astronomically high these days that it's becoming more and more of a pipe dream for so many Americans, but inflation itself is a nightmare: after reaching a 40-year high in June of 2022, many citizens were left feeling the burn and praying for the cost of living to finally revert back to more affordable levels.

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gen z corporate behaviors
Source: TikTok | @imdrebrown

It also doesn't help that salaries, overall, aren't keeping up with the current rate of inflation either. Another viral social media post about Gen-Z'ers in the workplace also highlights how many folks aren't excited about the prospect of clocking in 40 hours a week at their respective vocations, while someone else argued that it's impossible for Gen-Z workers to live "on current wages."

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There were also throngs of people who responded to DeAndre's video and shared their own Gen-Z corporate behaviors. Like one person who quipped that their employer should be grateful that their employees even showed up to their shifts in the first place: "I am a gen z in corporate you should be grateful I even appear at work"

Someone else replied that Gen-Z workers do value their alone time while at work and that they are particularly careful to not blend their social relationships with their professional ones: "I am Gen Z in corporate do not ask me if I want to eat lunch together we already work together that should be enough"

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gen z corporate behaviors
Source: TikTok | @imdrebrown

Another quipped: "I’m a Gen Z in corporate. Why are we having a Zoom call when you could’ve sent an email?"

Someone else said that as a Gen Z worker, hours of operation don't really apply to them: "I’m Gen Z in corporate, Don’t bother asking me about my arrival and leave time as long as I am getting your work done!!"

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One TikToker also drove home that Gen-Z workers do indeed prioritize their work-life balance: "I’m a gen z in corporate, yes I very much care about my life outside of work more than this job"

There was another person who joked that Gen-Z workers are ready to leave their gigs at the drop of a hat: "I'm a Gen Z in corporate of course I have my resignation letter saved on my laptop and ready to be used"

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