The term quiet quitting has repercussions on social media as a movement that advocates doing only what is necessary at work, without exceeding schedules or activities.
The option to work remotely is an attraction for job seekers today, whether they are just starting out or have been in the industry for decades. According to a survey from Conductor, which analyzed the volume of Google searches on the subject, last year the search for “entry-level remote jobs” increased by 309% as of August 18, 2022.
But now, with the term “quiet quitting” – resignation or silent resignation – on the rise, demonstrating a decline in productivity, some employers are turning to ways to monitor their remote workers and their productivity at work.
Vigilance against quiet quitting
Should employees expect their workplace to look like George Orwell’s Big Brother from now on? Pat Petitti, economist and CEO of the technology company Catalan, argues that employee surveillance tools only measure how busy they are, not productivity – and there is an important difference between the two. “While monitoring productivity may seem like an exercise in efficiency, it comes at the expense of employee autonomy and trust, and only on a personal level does it feel disrespectful and condescending.”
As someone who works with both freelancers and executives at large corporations, Petitti says companies that keep tabs on their employees don’t have a productivity problem, but a culture problem. “We wouldn’t use a tool like this or encourage our customers to use it,” she says. “As a client, do I really care if a freelancer is taking breaks to stay focused? Do I care how he organizes work? No way. If the objective is clear, it is up to him to know how to achieve it in a productive way, and only he knows the best way to use his time.”
Also read: Silent resignation: understand the trend launched by generation Z
What leaders recommend
While the silent layoff should alarm employees, he says it’s a tipping point for leaders to strengthen their business and make it a place where employees love to work. Creating a climate of surveillance is the wrong way to resolve the situation. Instead, Jackson outlines three directions employers should take:
- neither more nor less. In job descriptions, the exact expectations of a role must be spelled out exactly. If a manager notices that someone on their team is going beyond that, that should be rewarded with a longer list of responsibilities, a change in role, increased pay, and support staff if needed.
- Encourage and respect work/life boundaries. Silent giving up is born of burnout. Senior management and business leaders must set limits and consequences for those who violate them. This, in conjunction with reconnaissance tactics, is critical to preventing burnout and cultivating a culture in which professionals can thrive.
- New ways of working. Quiet quitting has the potential to usher in a new era of innovation. Employees are letting go of the stress that has seeped into other aspects of their lives. This has the potential to spark new ways of working that prioritize intuitive methods, alleviate anxiety, and eliminate norms that are not serving the integrity of the work.
Bryan Adams, Recruitment Agency CEO and Founder Ph.Creative says that as leaders create a new playbook for work, they must focus on wellness as an essential tool. “Leaders must provide more flexibility and benefits that meet the new basic requirements for real well-being,” he says, agreeing with Petitti that leaders must also increase trust and autonomy and keep pace with changes in relation to employee needs. .
Chris von Jako, President and CEO of BrainsWay, a company that develops medical equipment, agrees. According to him, the silent resignation is not related to a lack of passion or motivation, it is a protection around mental health, even if subconscious.
He gives advice on how leaders can mitigate this problem and minimize the damage to the company. “Re-evaluate processes with real-time feedback from employees, issue surveys and collect anonymous feedback on what employees really want from their roles, and then work together to implement appropriate changes, such as flexible working hours, hybrid work, monthly mental health days, and implementation of stricter policies on out-of-hours messaging. Overall, we have to start by listening and be ready to embrace change.”
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