The Importance of Knowing Gen Z’s Self-Values

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Gen Z's using their right during climate change campaign

Gen Z Dairy: Know Our Values Before Approaching Us

UMN Consulting, Jakarta – Do you ever feel so frustrated with how brands or policymakers shove some products or ideas into our faces without even considering that we (Indonesian Gen Z) absolutely don’t care about what they’re telling us? Yeah, welcome to the Gen Z club. 

It’s not rocket science. If you want our attention, you need to come to our terms. It’s basically our self-values. It’s the traits we genuinely care about. Wanna know why? Let’s break it down a little.

Inevitably, Gen Z or zoomers are the biggest populations in Indonesia. That number translates into us having a vital contribution economically. According to Business Insider, we have a spending power of more than USD 140 billion and would make up about 40% of global consumers. That much power and those data were collected back in 2020.

Now, welcome to the real business. There’s one thing a brand or policymaker can do to get our attention. It’s researchDon’t hold your breath; UMN Consulting already did all the work. After collecting 1,177 Gen Z across Indonesia in 2021, UMN Consulting will publish their report called The Gen Z’s Digital Media Consumption and Activities To be more specific, this report detailed the extent of Gen Z’s self-value that will guide them towards goals and motivation. In simpler words, we think about our self-value before making any decisions.


Shalom H. Schwartz’s theory of fundamental human values
Shalom H. Schwartz’s Theory of Fundamental Human Values (Source: UMN Consulting)

Using Schwartz’s theories of self-value, the report found that Gen Z are self-transcendent individuals. It means we value the welfare of other human beings and the environment.
Basically, we’re not selfish earthlings.

“We think Gen Z are ambitious or prone to hedonism. It turns out, those values under self-enhancement are not significant. Gen Z care more about other human beings,” said UMN’s lecturer and researcher, Rossalyn Asmarantika.

As Gen Z, we live and grow in the middle of digital advancement, enabling us to get information at our disposal. In addition, we also live through the recession and pandemics, making us more aware of our surroundings and the rest of the world than the previous generation.

“With information literally at their fingertips, they can actively participate in social issues like the environment, gender equality, or human rights. Especially, this ease of access makes it easier for them to care,” she added.

Gen Z are Self-transcendence Individuals (Source: UMN Consulting)


In our daily life, we pretty much convey self-transcendence values that represent the act of tolerance and mindfulness. The value itself doesn’t have to be fancy whatsoever. We act according to what we believe. For instance, one of our respondents, Albertus Kristianto (24), puts his self-values into what he considers would make the world a better place. 

“As Gen Z, we have advanced technology. Personally, my self-values are something that is beneficial to me and others. For example, I see the LGBT community as equal human beings who deserve mutual respect and support just like the rest. For the environment, I feel responsible for the trash I contribute, so for instance, I use tumblers instead of plastic cups whenever I buy something,” Albert said. 

We Also Care About Achievements

Other than self-transcendence, the researcher also noted an interesting finding. Us Zoomers are also particularly interested in our achievements, which fall under self-enhancement based on Schwartz’s theory. This means we add a sense of accomplishment to the list of values we care about other than caring for others and the environment. This achievement is necessary for us to know exactly what we want. 

This is precisely what Dhea Liem (22) sees as her self-value. For her, she considers self-value as her self-esteem. That being said, she correlates how she sees herself with her achievements. The 22-year-old business advertisement student explained further that having a reputable company to work for that pays well is essential. However, something more important to her is the philanthropic contribution she makes in her life.


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“It’s the means of making the world a better place that matters to me more. I know the money-making world and philanthropy are contradictory, but I feel like I have the responsibility to do so,” she said.

“As humans, we’re very destructive. I’m not saying all humans are bad. Some dedicate their lives to making innovations that’ll help the Earth. Unfortunately, we live in capitalism. Everything needs to be monetized for it to work. That’s when the problem arises,” she continued.

All in all, we’re the digital natives. It means brands and policymakers can utilize digital media to reach us as long as it aligns with our self-values. FYI, UMN Consulting discovered that advertisements seen on digital media by Gen Z affect their decisions onward before purchasing products. 

That being said, putting the capital on Gen Z Self-values, one should know how to use social media effectively (since we basically live there), how to incorporate our self-value into advertisements, which influencer we like so brands don’t waste their money, and what kind of advertisement we want. Go check out further details here or access our premium and freemium page for more comprehensive insights.

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