Canadian pop star Shawn Mendes is putting his work on hold. On Wednesday, he took to Instagram to announce that he is cancelled the rest of his Wonder world tour to focus on his mental health. In early July, the 23-year-old postponed the North American leg of their tour for three weeks for the same reason.
While Mendes doesn’t have a typical job or workplace, his choice to put his well-being before his career is part of a larger trend. More young employees are speaking out about their struggles, taking breaks from work to recharge, or quitting jobs that don’t serve them, a shift that has been amplified by the pandemic.
Research from RBC Insurance shows that the majority of Canadians between the ages of 18 and 34 are struggling with their mental health. The pandemic and cultural shift around talking openly about wellness is pushing Gen Z workers to contemplate their relationship to their jobs, and unlike their parents, they’re not afraid to voice your concerns. In fact, 83 percent of Gen Z workers say they want mental health days at work and 42 percent insist they would quit their job if they were burned out and suffering from work-life balance issues , according to a recent study by TalentLMS and BambooHR. found survey.
Younger workers demand more from workplaces
Nita Chunzer, associate professor of leadership and organizational management at the University of Guelph, says part of this change is because Gen Z doesn’t want their lives to revolve around work; are less willing to sacrifice personal values or well-being in exchange for a salary. Instead, they see work as something they need to do to pay bills and survive. One reason is that this generation has grown up watching their parents commit to jobs only to be laid off during the financial crisis of the early 2000s. “That has done a lot to shape the prospects that [Gen Z has] about work,” says Chhinzer.
As a result, many young workers refuse to accept the bare minimum and make personal sacrifices. Millennial preferences for things like Flexible hours and reconciliation of personal and work life. they have now become expectations for Gen Z. During the pandemic, when remote work became the norm, young employees rejoiced and now want it to stay: Workers ages 18 to 34 are nearly 60 percent more willing to quit their job compared to their older peers if they were told they could no longer work from home, research from McKinsey found.
But perks aren’t the only thing that matters to workers born in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Chhinzer says younger employees don’t just work for money to pay rent, but to get more. worth From his job. Many Gen Z job seekers will resist accepting a job offer to work at an organization that is aligned with their values, such as caring about altruism or the climate crisis. It’s a demographic that’s also looking for career growth opportunities at work, according to Chhinzer.
Stars outside of Mendes have also spoken out about mental health and work. Singer billie eilish has spoken about his depression and body dysmorphic disorder and how it affects his work, and fellow Canadian Justin Bieber revealed his struggles with depression after him canceled tour dates in 2017 for personal reasons. His experience led him to make changes in his professional life: Bieber recently shared that the team that works at his current Justice world tour will have access to free mental health careand as part of his partnership with online therapy platform BetterHelp, Bieber also offered his fans a month of free therapy.
Not everyone can afford to take a mental health break from work, so workplaces should become more accommodating. Canada faces one of its tighter labor markets registered and Gen Z will compensate more than 25 percent of the workforce by 2025, which means employers may need to rethink their approach to attracting and retaining them. Chhinzer believes that organizations that can capitalize on and meet the needs of Gen Z workers will benefit from the fresh perspectives, creativity and diversity they bring. Chhinzer believes that this generation, when motivated, can change the world. “It would be a great loss to hire a brilliant mind and lose her because you didn’t care about her individual well-being.”