Drought Resistance: What Do Today’s Young Mechanics Want?

What Do Today’s Young Mechanics Want

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In this article, we’ll discuss what today’s Gen Z and Millenials want in their careers, and how to apply this knowledge to attract top auto repair technician talent. 

Conceptualminds | June 28, 2022

What Today's Young Mechanics Want

Retail Storefront

We don’t recommend holding your breath until the ongoing mechanic shortage is over.

Estimates see the mechanic shortage lasting well over ten years, during which time 100,000 openings will be generated from retiring baby boomers. (Get links from other article).

And given the growing complexity of electronic car parts, young and recently trained mechanics are a necessity.

Don’t let the odds discourage you. They may not be in your favor this minute, but you can reliably land technician talent even during this drought if you take a more competitive approach.

The first step is to learn what this younger generation of mechanics wants.

Don't Believe Everything You Hear About Millennial and Gen Z

There’s a lot of conflicting information about Gen Z and Millennials. Some come from bad research meant to generate headlines, others from cultural stereotypes and others from legitimate studies.

Be wary of very specific, broadly applied stereotypes. Maybe you hear both generations are lazy, will never talk on the phone, or expect instant gratification from everything.

It’s hard to generalize about generations in general, many of the things we associate with younger generations have more to do with differences in life stages and environment, and less to do with drops in work ethic and competence.

Well-Being is a Top Concern for Today’s Young Mechanics

Health and Well-Being

Young workers ranked health and well-being as high priorities before the pandemic, but Covid-19’s physical and emotional toll has only focused this concern.

Covid-19 safety precautions are still a real concern, but to younger generations, wellness encompasses more than physical health.

While wellness packages are more often seen in larger corporate environments, studies show small-scale programs to be highly effective, improving productivity, blood pressure, and even life satisfaction.

And given that 75 percent of healthcare costs come from preventable conditions, it’s good for the bottom line, too.

Millennials and Gen Z Want Transparency and Authenticity from Supervisors

Outdated Auto Repair Shop

Both Millennials and Gen Z rate transparency and authenticity as top priorities. They want more than platitudes, they expect ethical blind spots to be addressed, and they want to know what they’re doing is helping.

Whereas past generations associated ethics with the personal character of leadership, younger workers tend to look at how behavior affects the people around them and the planet.

Millennials are particularly focused on ethical leadership—potentially due to entering the workforce during the 2008 financial crisis. As such, they’re more skeptical of “company-speak” and not being clued in on important goings-on.

Diversity is a Fact of Life for Millenials and Gen Z

Workplace Diversity

Today’s young workforce grew up in more diverse environments compared to those in the Baby Boomer and Generation X cohort. The once-permissive attitudes around stereotyping and other targeted comments have eroded.

they feel more comfortable if everyone around them feels more comfortable, regardless of sexual orientation, gender, gender expression, race, or religion.

There’s a real functional aspect to diversity that many miss, too. Seeing disrespectful behavior, or being the target of it, breeds the district.

Regardless of the intent, it’s poisonous for a positive collaborative work environment.

Gen Z Are Future Focused

Given their life stage, career growth is understandably a top concern. Among surveyed workers, Gen Z are more likely to highly rank “maximizing individual productivity,” and are also the sole generation to have among their top ten, “being visible to be promoted.” 

As such, they’re more likely to expect coaching and advancement opportunities compared to previous generations.

Learning More is the First Step Towards Standing Out

It’s easy to get discouraged by uneven odds, but it’s well within your ability to flip them in your favor. It’s not an instantaneous change, but it’s an achievable one.  



Learn About Conceptual Minds


At Conceptual Minds, our team helps automotive businesses get the most from their marketing dollars with tried and tested methods backed up by regular testing and research.

We equip our clients with the tools and knowledge to eliminate the guesswork from their marketing efforts and get top ROI through our tailored services. 

Ready to attract top auto technician talent?

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