These days you don’t have to be a TikToker to have come across the buzzword “Quiet-Quitting.” While the phrase seems to carry a negative connotation, we’d like to challenge that this -tale as old as time trend- can be a catalyst for positive change and increased self-awareness.
Today’s GenZ population describes quiet-quitting as doing the bare minimum to get a paycheck, no hustle clock-watchers. While the dangers of this mentality may seem self-evident, there is more to this movement than a simplistic definition. First, how about we rename “quiet-quitting” and call it “re-setting boundaries?” Giving 100% when you are on the job and clearly stating your boundaries when you are not, is very different than “I do the bare minimum.” We all deeply desire work-life balance and setting boundaries in our careers and home-life are the only way to bring these blurred lines into focus.
Rejecting the notion that work has to be your life isn’t a bad thing. The reason “quiet-quitting” or “acting your wage” has gained so much momentum lately is likely born out of burnout. The pandemic changed most people’s work environment, and the majority say they ended up working longer days, felt the need to be available all the time, all while receiving the same pay with no perks. Statistics show that more than 50% of employees experienced burnout during 2021 and 67% believe that the feeling worsened through the pandemic.
The ideal solution to this problem is pursuing a career and finding work that you truly love. If you are passionate about something it will motivate and drive you, both in and out of the workplace, and ultimately provide a deep sense of fulfillment. However, if this idyllic scenario is unattainable right now there are several other important factors to consider.
For employees here are some recommendations for establishing healthy boundaries:
1. Learn to say no. No is a complete sentence and does not require further elaboration.
2. Not answering calls, emails, or working outside of established work hours.
3. Take regular breaks.
4. Take your paid-time-off on a regular basis.
5. Document your work in detail. If an employer asks you repeatedly to do more work than your job description, you can use this documentation to help support a case to either increase your compensation or look for work elsewhere.
For bosses and managers, consider taking more of a supporting role with your employees so you can lead by example:
1. Stop checking start/stop times.
2. If possible, let people choose where they want to work (the office, home, or a combination of).
3. Encourage guilt-free time off.
4. Remove unnecessary meetings and distractions.
5. Encourage and genuinely listen to team feedback about how you manage.
6. Give employees what they need to be successful, get out of their way, and trust them to deliver.
When employees feel appreciated, valued, trusted, and are properly compensated they will give more and produce at a higher level. Let’s be vigilant to keep the conversation going about today’s work-life struggles and ignite positive change in the workplace!
Sources:What Managers Can Do To Address Quiet Quitting (forbes.com)35 critical work-life balance stats everyone should know (fingerprintforsuccess.com)16 Employee Burnout Statistics You Can’t Ignore (everyonesocial.com)Employee Burnout Report: COVID-19’s Impact and 3 Strategies to Curb It (indeed.com)