Understanding quiet quitting. Good or bad?
According to the HR Director, 1 in 3 UK workers currently label themselves as ‘quiet quitters’.
Employee turnover can have a significant impact on a company’s productivity and morale. But what about employees who quietly disengage from their work and responsibilities, rather than quitting their job abruptly? This, despite what the name suggests, is known as quiet quitting. It can be just as damaging to a company and is often harder to spot.
So, what is quiet quitting?
Quiet quitting refers to when employees gradually disengage from their work and responsibilities, without formally resigning or giving notice. This type of quitting can involve small changes in behaviour such as missing deadlines, reducing the quality of work, or losing motivation. Unlike traditional quitting, quiet quitting can take a long time for an employer to realise and can have a significant impact on a company’s productivity and morale. Essentially, your employees will be doing the bare minimum to get by.
What’s the biggest worry for managers?
The loss of productivity is one of the biggest concerns for employers when it comes to quiet quitting. As employees disengage, their work may start to suffer, resulting in missed deadlines and lower quality output. Additionally, a lack of motivation among employees can lead to a decrease in collaboration between teams, making it harder for a company to achieve its goals. If aiding co-workers, peers or new starters isn’t part of the job description, then many staff still make time and effort to lend a hand. However, disengaged employees will move away from these types of tasks and remain siloed.
Another concern for employers is that quiet quitting can often be a precursor to formal resignations. If employees are disengaging from their work, it may be a sign that they are unhappy or unfulfilled in their job. If this issue is not addressed, it may lead to formal resignations, which can be even more costly for a company in terms of time and resources. Not to mention the knock-on effect this can have on other employees in the company.
The good in quiet quitting
From an employee’s perspective, quiet quitting may be a way to protect their work-life balance and avoid burnout. If an employee is feeling overwhelmed or unfulfilled in their job, disengaging may be a way for them to set boundaries and avoid working excessive hours or sacrificing their wellbeing.
Additionally, quiet quitting may be a sign that employees are seeking more autonomy and control over their work. If employees feel like they have more control over their work, they may be more motivated and engaged, which can ultimately lead to improved productivity and job satisfaction.
Moorepay’s external survey showed that nearly half of all employees stated that they felt no change in motivation over the last year. However, 30.6% were little or much less motivated. Which begs the question, how does an employer deal with quiet quitting?
How to effectively address quiet quitting
As a HR manager, it’s important to pay close attention to the signs of quiet quitting and proactively address any issues that may be contributing to disengagement. Here are a few steps you can take to help prevent quiet quitting:
- Encourage your employees to share their thoughts and feelings with you. If employees feel like they can talk openly with their HR manager, they may be more likely to express their concerns and avoid disengaging from their work.
- If employees are feeling overwhelmed or unfulfilled in their job, offer support and resources to help them manage their workload. This can include additional training, flexible work arrangements, or access to counselling services. Moorepay’s survey showed that 33% of employers believe that introducing flexible working options would improve employee motivation. This was the most popular response after improving salaries. Read our free Flexible Working Guide.
- Take a close look at the company culture and see if there are any changes that can be made to improve employee satisfaction. For example, if employees feel like they are not being rewarded for their work, investigate the appreciation structure you have or review the benefits programme you offer. Check out our ‘building company culture’ webinar.
- Foster a positive work environment. Encourage collaboration and teamwork and create a positive and supportive work environment. This can help employees feel valued and appreciated and may help prevent disengagement.