The number of professionals from Generation Z taking on the role of company directors in the UK has seen a staggering 42% increase within a year. Their numbers have soared to nearly a quarter of a million people, as unveiled by a study examining filings at Companies House.
This increase in numbers amounting to an additional 72,000 young entrepreneurs born after 1997 reflects a shifting landscape where Gen Z’s fascination with entrepreneurship has propelled them into leadership roles, turning their side-hustles into flourishing business ventures.
Embracing Entrepreneurship as a Lifestyle
Ryan Hancock, a partner at Hazlewoods, notes that Gen Z is rewriting the traditional narrative of career aspirations. Unlike previous generations, where many fixated on climbing the corporate ladder within banks or law firms, Gen Z is carving a different course. It could be safe to say that the ‘dream’ for these young trailblazers no longer revolves around fitting a lifestyle into a predefined career. These individuals would rather leverage the freedom that comes with running their own business to shape a career that seamlessly aligns with their chosen lifestyle.
Beyond Conventional Career Paths
The idea of entrepreneurship appeals to people from Gen Z. With an increasing number opting out of the conventional career trajectory. The study highlights how many young individuals perceive running their own businesses as an avenue to not only escape the rigidity of traditional career paths but also to build a career on their terms, the more flexibility they get, the better it is for them.
This paradigm shift is indicative of a generation unafraid to forge its own professional journey, prioritising personal fulfilment and flexibility over conforming to established norms.
Maturation of Side-Hustles
The increase in Gen Z professionals becoming company directors is not merely a statistical anomaly. It says a lot about the maturation of side hustles into robust and sustainable companies.
Many of these budding entrepreneurs started with online ventures that have now evolved into profitable businesses. This progression underscores the adaptability and resourcefulness inherent in Gen Z, as they navigate the dynamic landscape of the digital age.
Gen X Directors Taking a Step Back
While Gen Z forges ahead, the study also sheds light on a contrasting trend among Gen X company directors, born between 1965 and 1981. The number of Gen X directors has seen a slight decrease of 10,000, settling at 2.37 million in 2023, down from the peak of 2.38 million in the previous year. This decline suggests that Gen X directors are gradually stepping back from demanding roles, potentially embracing the prospect of early retirement.