Date of Award

Spring 2021

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


College of Education


Department of Education

Primary Advisor

Dr. Karen Ingle

Second Advisor

Dr. Janet L. Deck

Third Advisor

Dr. Gail M. Cushing


The purpose of the qualitative case study was to explore the perceptions of organizational managers in the north central Florida area regarding the strengths and gaps in knowledge and skills of Generation Z employees. Generation Z is defined in the study as individuals born between the years 1997-2012. Managers of seven occupations, including a state prison facility, first responder, retail, restaurant, transport refrigeration, and grocery industries were asked open-ended questions and personally interviewed to determine any perceived strengths or gaps in the knowledge and skills of the employees falling into the Generation Z cohort. Strengths reported by the managers concerning Generation Z employees were that some employees were technologically savvy, can multi-task, and will take on a challenge that has a clear personal benefit. The gaps noted by the managers included that some Generation Z employees demonstrated poor work ethic, an inability to solve problems quickly, and minimal respect for others. The data were analyzed, and four themes emerged: technology, communication, life skills, and work ethic. Further research could investigate workforce dynamics as the Generation Z employees establish mutually beneficial relationships with their managers in the workplace environment. Additional research may include determining if training programs should be developed to narrow any gaps of knowledge and skills of Generation Z employees perceived by the managers prior to the employees entering the workforce.