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I’m Already Tired of Hearing About “Quiet Quitting’? Are you?

leadership quiet quitting Oct 11, 2022

I created and published a YouTube video on the topic of Quiet Quitting a couple of weeks ago. In that video I described, at a very high level, what I thought of this whole movement and the responsibility on both sides.

The more I hear about and read about this topic, the more concerned I get for these guys that are quiet quitting. Why? Because it occurred to me that young millennials and Gen Z’ers have never really known hardship. The last really big hardship “event” was 9/11 and most don’ t remember it or were barely born when it happened. There really has been twenty years of prosperity with little, to no hardship, for these guys. In addition, we have coddled them and spoiled them to the point that I worry they will pay a big price.

Quiet quitting works just fine as long as the economy stays strong. There are plenty of jobs with a real dearth of quality candidates to fill them. That has been the situation since before the pandemic and then it only got worse after the pandemic. I think a couple of things happened. This is based solely on my thinking and is not based on any official research. I think that during the pandemic, people of all ages were quite traumatized by basically being locked in our homes for an extended period of time and being completely disconnected from others.

In full disclosure, my business was not negatively impacted by the pandemic because I kept right on coaching my clients throughout. That was quite an experience and perhaps I should write a blog on what I learned during the pandemic.

One of the things I learned is that our feelings about our workload changed. I can only speak directly to the experience of my clients and what I heard from them, but I would venture to say that it was pretty typical. My clients are located all over the world, and I found that the experience was very much the same for all of them regardless of their geographic location.

Every single one of them complained about not being able to get away from work because they were all working from home. They were starting earlier (because there was no commute) and working later (again because there was no commute) and because what else were they going to do? Did you have that experience?

Prior to COVID we were already feeling like we had no work/life balance and NOW we couldn’t even separate the two!!

That’s why the younger folks ask “Why Work?”

When asked to go the extra mile, they refuse outright, or they simply ignore it. If you put pressure on them to deliver, they simply change jobs. There should be concern at every level about this if you are a hiring manager at a corporation. It is expensive to have to constantly replace employees so not only will it cost you lots of money, but it will also put even more strain on the recruiting process.

I don’t want you to think that I put all the responsibility and blame on these guys. No, as I stated in my video, I see both sides of this issue.

Quitting Bad Corporate Culture

One of the most frequent topics of my calls with my coaching clients is work/life balance with a close second being “How to do I get my boss to help me re-prioritize my workload?” Quiet quitting is simply a symptom of low engagement. Why do people have low engagement?  Here’s what Gallup says about it:

“Across generations, U.S. employee engagement is falling, according to survey data from Gallup, but Gen Z and younger millennials, born in 1989 and after, reported the lowest engagement of all during the first quarter at 31%.

Jim Harter, chief scientist for Gallup’s workplace and well-being research, said workers’ descriptions of “quiet quitting” align with a large group of survey respondents that he classifies as “not engaged”—those who will show up to work and do the minimum required but not much else. More than half of workers surveyed by Gallup who were born after 1989—54%—fall into this category.

One factor Gallup uses to measure engagement is whether people feel their work has purpose. Younger employees report that they don’t feel that way, the data show. These are the people who are more likely to work passively and look out for themselves over their employers, Dr. Harter said.”

The Bad Effects of Quiet Quitting Linger

Gen Z's 6-figure side hustles should scare companies more than quiet quitting, Gary Vaynerchuk says: 'There's so many god--mn options for these kids to make money on the internet'

He said a focus on quiet quitting ignores the main problem for businesses: Young people can get paid better elsewhere, so they're "never applying in the first place."

"These kids are not growing up in the world we grew up in," Vaynerchuk said. "We s--t on Gen Z for being entitled and lazy, and what they're being is thoughtfully understanding of their options."

What Happens If The Economy Tanks?

This is what has me very concerned. These guys have never really been through any real hardship. They consider being asked to stretch themselves and really hustle, a hardship.

My concern is not out of the question. I see reports daily in my Google feed of another company cancelling any immediate hiring plans until more clarity about the current economy can be found. Here’s an example in my feed today: from CNBC “Job openings plunged by more that 1.1 million in August”

My concern is what happens when these companies start having a reduction in force or layoffs? How will they handle this and will it change their willingness to move jobs or to quietly quit. The answer to these and other questions remain to be answered. I do not have a crystal ball so I certainly can make no prediction. I can only express my concern.

My hope is that both the younger generations and the companies they work for can make necessary changes to meet in the middle so that we do not face a catastrophe!


About Connie

My greatest joy is helping clients become people who lead. My mission is to help people grow into the strong, successful people that I know they can be.  My passion is building great talent while building authentic and long-lasting relationships! I also love using my experience as both a corporate executive and an entrepreneur to provide actionable feedback that helps people reach new heights no matter if that is working in the corporate world or as an entrepreneur or as a stay-at-home parent! I start right where you are and we grow from there!

Growing up in a small town, I often found myself wondering if there were more to the world than this. After being given opportunities to lead, I genuinely felt like I was in my element for the first time in my life. I decided it was time to break free of my limitations and become the person I knew I was meant to be—confident to build a career that I had always imagined.

I have had a career signature of being asked by senior corporate leaders such as Bill Gates, Steve Ballmer, and Rick Wagoner to assume advisor-consultant roles with clients and executive teams. I was recruited by The Walt Disney Company to coach executives and worked jointly with their leadership to create career development plans for Disney’s Enterprise IT group.

As a recognized leader and mentor, I hold more than 20 years’ experience building relationships, developing teams, and coaching associates to success.

You can contact me via email at [email protected]

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