It only has been weeks since the newly coined term “Quiet Quitting” exploded on the world wide web. Thanks to TikTok, this term spread like wildfire and finally arrived here in the Philippines. I am referring to “Quiet Quitting,” which is not new because this concept has been around the HR world for years. As defined by news blogs and TikTok videos, when you “quiet quit,” you do not resign from your work but from the idea of going above and beyond the written job description. This concept is what you see in disengaged employees, and it just so happens that social media made its rebirth with a new name. Here are my thoughts on this, and please don’t get me wrong because I am also an employee.
“Quiet Quitting” is not wrong. However, it does take a toll on both employers and employees. No one wins on this, okay? Yes, maybe when you “quiet quit,” you tend to save your energy and talent from going beyond and above the expected work performance because you only have a short sight of what you earn versus what your employer expects you to give. Millennials (whom I am also part of) and Gen Z joining the creation of this work culture may feel like winning over the employers, but sorry to burst your bubble, because you are not.
As an employee, I do feel the burnout. I also experience stress and the hustle, but I am fully aware that it is also my choice to do it. I need to survive, not just to stay but also to outgrow my present self. As an HR Manager, I see its effect on the management side. Losing high-performing and high-potential employees over this trend is not something we can be proud of saying. As an HR Consultant, I see that this shouldn’t be a difficult phase for employers. Why? Because it will always be there. Disengaged employees will always be there, and there are a lot of factors why employees get disengaged. It may not always be about the salary, the job description, the work culture, the boss, and not even the work tools. It may also be about their problems in the family, finances, love life, and even in how they juggle all things at the same time. We are all facing storms, and we are all in different boats. Specific reasons cannot box disengaged employees because it will always be complex.
Why employers don’t need to worry about “Quiet Quitting”?
1. There should be no regrets about letting go of disengaged employees. As I have said above, there are several factors why employees become disengaged, and if it’s affecting your operations, then don’t be afraid to let them go. Other employees and more suitable candidates can share and carry out your company’s vision and mission with you.
2. If an employee is working to make ends meet, as long as they are performing as expected, then it’s okay.
3. Over my years of working, I have firmly believed in the Performance > Seniority Concept. Performance Management has been precise on the metrics used by almost every company to measure an employee’s efficiency. (5– Outstanding, 4– Exceeds Expectations, 3- Meets Expectations, 2- Needs Improvement, 1- Unacceptable)
4. Quiet Quitting will only allow you to yield a “Meets Expectations” performance rating, and we all know that leaders and high performers will always exceed or demonstrate outstanding performance. Salary increases, Promotions, and incentives are performance-driven. Yes, it may allow you to experience some of these, but they may fall short of your expectations, making you feel undervalued and unmotivated. Employees may leave even if you meet their expectations for various reasons.
5. Quiet Quitting may allow you to stay in your current work, but career growth is a different question. Employees still need their employers to provide the avenue to grow.
Employers should not worry about Quiet Quitting. However, they should do something about it. All of what’s happening speaks volumes about work culture and the responses of both employees and employers. Employers need employees to get the work done. Employees need employers to have food on the table. Again, no one wins on Quiet Quitting. Many companies are already doing their best to give employees both wants and needs; still, there are disengaged employees. And as I see it, if your employees are not performing above and beyond the expected work performance, it is best to talk to the employee and ask how you can motivate them to work at their best. If you are a business leader, “modeling” is also crucial. The new generation must witness how work should be done – with excellence and integrity. Employers should allow the employees to grow by providing an avenue for it. It will only become a win-win situation if employers and employees exert efforts above and beyond each others’ expectations.