I'll rather be jobless than be unhappy at work, says Gen Z

Millennials & Gen Z respondents said they would quit a job if it prevents them from enjoying life.
PHOTO: PHOTO: Pexels

The last time Yaw, who declined to give his full name, was fully employed was two years ago.

But this law graduate is not really bothered by his current jobless status.

He told AsiaOne that he is particular about his future employer and he'll want to have a good work-life balance.

Yaw, a Malaysian who graduated in 2019, is preparing for the Malaysian Bar examination and teaches violin part-time.

"I think that there is a need for adjustment on the work-life balance offered by companies," he added. "Some of us do look forward to getting a job and learning new experiences along the way but there are some issues created in the workplace that are not being taken seriously - which makes us want to quit the job." 

While this may sound irresponsible to those from the older generation, Yaw is not alone in his thinking.

At 25, Yaw is known as a Millennial-Gen Z Cusper, those born on the cusp of when Millennials and Gen Z-ers meet.

According to a recent Randstad survey, more than half of the Millennials and Gen Z respondents said they would quit a job if it prevented them from enjoying life.

This means that many younger people won't take up jobs that don't meet their expectations and are very willing to "walk away from one if it [the job] interferes with how they want to lead their lives", said the survey. 

That compares with just over a third of those polled who identify as Baby Boomers (those born between 1946 and 1964), according to this 2022 Randstad Workmonitor. 

This survey of 35,000 employees across 34 countries also showed that 41 per cent of their youngest generation of respondents - Millennials and Gen Z - claim to have quit jobs citing conflicts with their personal life.

This report, conducted online among those aged 18 to 67, also surveyed respondents from Singapore, and some of the key findings are: 

  • 52 per cent of Singapore employees say they will quit their jobs if it was preventing them from enjoying their life.
  • 62 per cent would choose not to work at all, if money was no object.
  • 41 per cent say they would rather be unemployed than be unhappy in a job.
  • 56 per cent agree that their personal life is more important than their work life.
  • 80 per cent say that flexibility in terms of working hours is important.
  • 27 per cent say they have quit a job because it didn't provide enough flexibility.

READ ALSO: 41% of workers in Singapore would give up bigger bonus for remote working: Survey

khooyihang@asiaone.com