Although quiet quitting isn’t a new concept, the term has recently gained popularity on social media as employees reject the toxic hustle culture. Sure, the phrase the grind never stops sounds cool. However, it’s too far-fetched in real life. Meant for pumping a person, it’s just outright unhealthy and should be abandoned for good.
The hustle culture is counterproductive because being productive all day long is not humanly possible. With burnout and exhaustion, you just end up achieving lesser than what you aimed for. The hustle culture drains both mental and physical health. It thrives on stress and surprisingly enough (sarcasm intended), a body needs rest. An exhausted mind and body won’t be able to function.
So, what is quiet quitting?
The philosophy of quiet quitting isn’t abruptly leaving a job but doing exactly what the job requires, no more no less. The main objective of this mindset revolves around avoiding occupational burnout and paying more attention to one’s mental health and personal well-being. Proponents of quiet quitting refer to it as acting your wage.
Proponents want to do the bare minimum to get the job done and set clear boundaries to improve work-life balance.
These employees will still fulfill their job duties. However, they do not subscribe to the hustle culture to guide their career and stand out to their superiors. They also stick to what is in their job description and when they go home, they leave work behind them. Then, they can focus on non-work duties and activities.
According to Asana’s 2022 Anatomy of Work report, seven out of ten employees experienced burnout in the last year.
The report findings also showed that employees suffering from burnout are less engaged, make more mistakes, leave the company, and remain at a higher risk for low morale. Now, people have started to take to social media, promoting their discontent.
Work does not have to be life. People should start to reconsider their work-life needs. Quiet quitting is just a new name for the old behavior. A work environment is a place where people want to go the extra mile.
The biggest way to prevent disengagement revolves around improving the employee experience. Talk to employees, gather their feedback, and discuss what leaders can do to make them feel appreciated. Aside from that, it can be actually as simple as regular words of encouragement.
CNBC describes Quiet Quitting as the next phase of the Great Resignation.
The Great Resignation dominated the economic news cycle amid the pandemic. During the second half of 2022, quiet quitting gained momentum at a time when rates of productivity rose some concern. Real You Leadership founder Nadia De Ala quietly quit her job about five years ago.
“Quiet quitting is an antidote to hustle culture. It is almost direct resistance and disruption of hustle culture. And I think it’s exciting that more people are doing it.”
For some, quiet quitting was mentally checking out from work. For others, it became about not accepting additional work without additional pay. Plus, with remote work, it remains far easier to feel less involved, and less part of a team, and it’s easier for employees to break up with their managers.
However, from a managerial point of view, it is actually kind of worrying about people engaging in quiet quitting as a means of getting revenge on a company. A career coach in New York City named Matt Spielman continues this statement.
“Quiet quitting seems very passive-aggressive. If somebody is burnt out, there should be a candid conversation about that, and it should be both ways. Just saying, ‘I am going to do the absolute minimum because I am entitled to it or I have issues’ — it doesn’t really help anybody.”
He also believes that quiet quitting prevents people from finding jobs they love, which provides them with a sense of meaning and belonging. He says, “There is no sadder thing to waste all this time in your life trying not to enjoy and be engaged and being excited in the work you are doing.”
Advocating for ourselves and having honest conversations with the managers and the company you work for. And, those are essential social skills that pay off in our careers and relationships. Building resilience is rewarding and can lead to better outcomes in the office and beyond.
Angela Grace P. Baltan is a Communication graduate from Colegio de San Juan de Letran. She doesn’t hesitate to be opinionated in analyzing movies and television series. As a writer, she uses her articles to advocate for feminism, gender equality, and mental health among others.