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What Is Quiet Quitting?

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Human Resources

29 September 2022

Quiet quitting is a term that has been around for quite some time. But it only went viral a few months ago on TikTok!

The name itself is misleading because when you hear quiet quitting, you’ll think it has to do with someone quitting their job, but it isn’t that. So what does it even mean?

Sit back, and relax while we tell you all we know about quiet quitting and why it went viral.

Meaning of Quiet Quitting

Quiet quitting entails performing only what your job requires and nothing else; you stop doing anything extra! You continue to come to work, but strictly within the parameters of your job. So no more assisting with extra duties or reviewing work emails after work hours.

According to Metro, this can take numerous forms, including declining initiatives based on interest, refusing to answer work messages after hours, or simply feeling less involved in the profession!

It could be as essential as a mental change invisible to others but allows you to feel less psychologically and emotionally committed to your job. Although this may sound attractive, experts warn caution…

 How Quiet Quitting Went Viral

Since the epidemic, many young workers have become dissatisfied with the lack of acknowledgment for hard work and additional working hours. They are rejecting burnout in favor of work-life balance. Self-preservation and "acting your wage" are at the heart of the movement!

The term "quiet quitting" gained popularity recently after American TikTokker @Zaidlepplin released a viral video claiming “work is not your life." Surprisingly, the overall movement may have originated in China, where the now-censored hashtag #tang became famous.

The video has more than four hundred thousand likes and more than four thousand comments; most commenters agree with him. A user called Lookatmyfeesh said, “I quit six months ago, and guess what! Same pay, same recognition, same everything… but no more stress!”

What Quiet Quitting Looks Like & What Perks Do Employees Receive From it

It goes with no doubt that employees get something from quiet quitting; they get to do less and still get paid the same as others who do extra work and stay overtime. Most organizations don’t have incentives or compensation for those that work extra hours. And because of that, quiet quitters no longer bother!

Employers need to have an employee recognition program to discourage quiet quitters.

Now you know what employees get from quiet quitting; the next thing is how you know your coworker or employee is quiet quitting. Here are a few attributes of quiet quitters:

- Reduced productivity or withdrawal from the team

- Limited communication and involvement in only what’s necessary

- It may also manifest as complaints from coworkers about the silently quitting employee. Colleagues may be annoyed by having to pick up the slack or feeling left out…

- It could appear as employee "cynicism or indifference" toward work, or it could express as employees being mute rather than providing input.

 What should Employers Do?

According to The Washington Post, employers must first recognize that silent resignation is more than just setting limitations!

"...It relates to the weary and angry feeling that many people are feeling as the pandemic winds down… People are reevaluating their priorities, and social alienation may be a contributing cause."

It proposed that businesses "frequently" survey employees to understand their views better... Going beyond productivity metrics and seeking comments that help management comprehend "the complete picture of engagement."

HR departments should conduct in-depth onboarding and exit interviews, particularly with Gen Z and Millenials… The purpose is to gain a deeper understanding of what inspires employees and causes them to leave.

Managers can avoid employee burnout by encouraging the latters to take breaks during the day and to use their vacation and paid time off throughout the year.

Managers can also set a good example by not replying to emails while they aren't working! Once an employee signs off for the evening, managers should avoid delivering non-urgent late messages "to incentivize employees to entirely unplug from their computers."

"Many employees began taking 'workations' and working remotely from different areas during the pandemic, but employees need to take time away from the computer to avoid burnout."

Wellness-related bonuses such as workplace yoga and mental health days have gained popularity during the epidemic!

Let’s switch perspectives again and look at things from employees’ perspectives!

 Advantages of Quiet Quitting

Quiet quitting has some significant advantages; the major ones are:

1. Time for Personal Projects or Side Hustles

Gone are the days when people have just one job! Most people these days use their 9-5 to pay the bills and invest in secondary projects…

Millennials and GenZers essentially are not contented with just surviving; they want to live a good life and achieve their dreams. 85% of them are entrepreneurs who would much rather put that extra energy into their ventures outside of a 9-to-5.

Once it's 5 o'clock, they leave their workplace and return to work on stuff or spend some well-deserved time with friends and family.

Millennials and GenZers are content creators, bloggers, social media managers, and other internet remote-based jobs. Like most entrepreneurs, it takes a while to succeed, so they build their brand while working a 9-5 job!

2. Work-life integration

Workers recognized that no matter how hard they worked, they would not receive the expected payoff.

And, as most individuals have discovered in recent years, mental and physical health take a back seat to productivity in many of these regulated business environments.

Quiet quitting can effectively protect one's mental and physical health in a hazardous workplace. However, staying in a lousy job and doing the bare minimum means preceding the fulfillment that can come from a good one.

 Disadvantages of Quiet Quitting

Though quiet quitting might seem exciting and fun to some workers, it also has some disadvantages… We can highlight:

1. Labour Market Uncertainty

Quiet resigning has gone widespread during a period of market uncertainty. Employees have had the upper hand over their bosses in a talent war with more job offers than workers. However, an impending recession and cutbacks at high-profile companies such as Amazon, Meta, Netflix, and Google may mean shifting the balance of power!

Corporations are quickly laying people off; therefore, if you have decided to quit, we hope you are either looking for another work or have a successful side business…

2. Not Everyone Can Quiet Quit

Quiet quitting isn't for everyone. There are numerous reasons why people feel compelled to protect their employment at all costs… These reasons could be healthcare, consistent salary, or any other benefits that traditional corporate positions provide. Putting something at risk might be a dangerous bet, in that light!

 Final Thoughts

While quiet quitting is not a long-term plan, it can be utilized to create the space you need to figure out the next step in your career! Consider it a transition period.

With the stigma surrounding job-hopping fading, there's no need to stay in a job you don't enjoy for the long haul. So if you find yourself quitting, it's time to look for a job you enjoy. HuntZen is always here to help!

If it's about you, it's about us.