Quiet Quitting

First it was the blinding lights dance. Next, it was the viral pasta dish and then it was the industry-specific Tik Tok. There is #cleantok, #polittok and even #coffeetok, but what about #quietquitting?

Quiet Quitting is one of the new trends on TikTok. There is no dance, there is no cute sound grab and there certainly isn’t an Abba backing song. Perhaps it might be our algorithm being all things HR, but we’re pretty sure it is bigger than that.

It’s been a HR term for a while now. HR professionals are aware of what it is and how it plays out in the workplace. But combined with the current market pressures and recruitment bottleneck, Quiet Quitting is perhaps more prevalent.

What is Quiet Quitting?

Quiet quitting is when an Employee is appears to be at work but has become separated to the point that they are doing the least amount as possible to keep their job.

You might feel like they are going through the motions and are a little burnt out. You might feel like they have been working really hard lately and just need a moment to catch their breath. Or in the harsh reality of it all, you might feel like they are being lazy or trying to take you for a ride. While we don’t want you to jump to conclusions (remember we ALWAYS advocate for communication and transparency) these Employees might be evaluating their future and whatever that looks like.

In a similar situation, #sidehustle is trending just as much on Tik Tok. #Sidehustle is where influencers are promoting how individuals can make money on the side to discourage them from working the traditional 9-5.

So, with this, it is not unexpected that quiet quitting has become a thing in itself. If we look at where we are at globally now with the Pandemic, we can perhaps pinpoint a few reasons why. Labour shortages, the Great Resignation, change in working conditions and patterns and burn out, can all be attributed to people feeling unsettled. For a long point in time, people were just hanging out in jobs during the Pandemic for security and as we move into the new COVID normal, this security blanket is starting to fray.

The Pressure of Returning to the Office

All levels of Employees are under different pressures. For different people, it’s different types of pressures but none the less, for some, seeking an alternative option is the only way through this.

Whether the motivation be financial, cultural, or related to workload, Employers don’t need to look far to determine how they can help.

We know that there is tension from some around returning to the office. We know that there are Employers who are back in the office full time. There are also Employers who are working a hybrid model. We know that there are Employers who are now still working remote.  So for an Employee, depending on their preference, if their preferred working style is not aligned to that of their current Employer, then there is scope for them to get what they want by changing roles.

There might also be a disconnection amongst the team and the employee engagement is not where the Employee wants it to be. This can lead them to begin seeking opportunities that align with what they want. It’s also a double-edged sword because if they are disengaged, then there is a possibility that they will share that with their co-workers and also damage their workplace perceptions.

It’s an Employee market

It’s an Employee’s market. Unfortunately, Employees do have the upper hand at the moment. There are opportunities and there are flexibilities that can come with finding the right role by taking the right amount of time. By engaging with and listening with your Employees, you’ll be in a better position to understand what it is they want and how you can get the best out of them. Even if it’s different to what you want. Be prepared to listen to them and take on board their suggestions. Recruitment is hard at the moment; you are better off investing in your current team.

What does Quiet Quitting look like?

Employee engagement is essential. It doesn’t need to be a formal process but it can be if that’s easier for you. It’s about understanding and empathy, and evaluating the situation as a whole. It’s about taking a step back to understand what is happening and why. This can be challenging for some, but jumping to conclusions isn’t helpful. There are several factors that influence Employees workplace perspectives. Looking at all these elements and how they impact one another and the Employee will give you the best possible way forward. Look at workloads, look at culture, look at expectations and look at what the market is doing. No one intentionally sets out to be disengaged, it happens as a result of small incremental changes. Jumping on these changes as soon as they pop up is the best way forward.

Need help?

Not sure where to start looking or what conversations to have around this? Why not let us help you? We can create a strategy to help retain your people. Drop us a line [email protected]

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