The Business Concept Q4 2022

6 ‘Quiet Quitting’ is a Symptom of Systemic Issues. ‘Quiet quitting’ is a term that has been flaunted extensively in the media in recent months. Much of the coverage paints a picture of employees being entitled, lazy, or unwilling to go the extra mile for their employers. But with pay stagnating, burnout rising, and job instability increasing, why should employees want to work unpaid overtime or commit to a toxic work culture? It is abundantly clear that the term ‘quiet quitting’ is at the core of a systemic issue; one that requires attitudes at the highest level of businesses to change. However, as employers retaliate with ‘quiet firing’ – a term that has recently gained traction – it appears that this evolution is perhaps out of reach. Indeed, ‘quiet firing’ is a reincarnation of Constructive Dismissal. It is a tactic that strives to push undesirable employees out of the business through providing them with the bare minimum – this could mean passing over them for promotions, ignoring them, reducing their hours, or phasing them out of company activities. It is pushing people out of their jobs, forcing them to give up their means of income during a major financial crisis. It would be right to argue that this is a much more serious and real problem than ‘quiet quitting’ and could even be the catalyst for such a movement. If employers view their teams as replaceable, fail to pay them in accordance with the job expectations, and effectively exploit their staff’s time and abilities, then they should absolutely expect their team to psychologically remove themselves from the unstable working environment. Employees cannot be blamed for wanting to do their jobs as written in their contract. ‘Quiet quitting’ is a falsity; it is a symptom of an ingrained issue that will not change until leaders reassess their attitudes and expectations of workers. Despite what the name implies, ‘quiet quitting’ does not involve quitting a job. Simply, this term has been coined to describe the current movement of employees disengaging from intense workplace cultures and only fulfilling their contracted tasks and hours. Popularised by social media, this ‘trend’ has been in the making for years due to the rise in workplace-related mental health issues, burnout, a lack of support, and stalling pay. ‘Quiet quitting’ is, in essence, a term used to describe people doing their jobs as stated in their contracts. It is disparaging, juvenile, and highlights the immensely toxic culture enforced by many corporations and business leaders. Moreover, it showcases the catastrophic lack of concern from employers surrounding the global workplace mental health crisis and the cost of living crisis, both of which are currently at the epicentre of the ‘quiet quitting’ debate. A 2019 study promoted by Forbes shows that this movement should come as no surprise to organisations. Three years ago, over 79% of employees involved in the study reported feeling mild, moderate, or severe burnout, with these employees being 63% more likely to take a sick day. Moreover, O.C. Tanner’s 2023 Global Culture Report uncovered that 50% generalists feel that their contributions are overlooked and that only 44% rate their employee experience positively. Moreover, wages are not rising in accordance with inflation, emphasising the UK’s current cost of living crisis. As noted by the Economics Observatory, the most recent data suggests that earnings are increasing by approximately 4% per annum, which is far below the current rate of consumer price index inflation. Consequently, it could be said that wages are falling, as people’s pay is rising slower than the increase in prices. This is supported by data from TUC, who state that ‘workers are suffering the longest and harshest pay squeeze in modern history.’ By taking control of their work lives and maintaining a healthy and sustainable work/life balance, workers are highlighting that enough is enough. There is an inherent problem with the current attitudes surrounding work – people should not be working more than necessary for no pay, and this should not be a requirement for progression or recognition. People should not be overexerting themselves – mentally or physically – for a job. May21079 7. Bespoke Content