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Combatting Quiet Quitting in a Small Business

Combatting Quiet Quitting in a Small Business

The concept of "quiet quitting" has been gaining attention, it is also known as "silent resignation". But do employees actually “quiet quit”?

Here’s the definition of “quiet quitting”: refers to employees disengaging from their work and gradually withdrawing their effort and commitment without formally resigning from their job.

I am going to make a hard suggestion here – let’s stop calling this QUIET QUITTING. This has minimal to do with the employees and everything to do with the business. But the name “quiet quitting” puts the responsibility on the employee directly. It all goes back to old fashioned employee engagement and treating people like… people.

If you are combatting quiet quitting in a small business and seeing the signs of decreased productivity, increased absenteeism, decline in engagement, negative shift in behavior, reduced initiative or innovation, the impact of this on your company is turnover, decline in performance, and possibly negative impact on the culture.

As a business owner, or a supervisor, it’s important to understand the needs of your employees through engagement surveys, 1:1 conversations, performance reviews, and casual conversations. If you do not know how employees are feeling in their job or at the workplace, it’s time to schedule that difficult conversation and ask the question “Do you like your job?” “Do you like working here?”. The response might shock you, but the outcome could be positive.

Here are some other ways to address the disengaged employee that is considering leaving your company:

  1. Provide recognition and rewards. Read more about each of these here and here.

  2. Learn about Sunday Scaries (here) and create ways to prevent them.

  3. Provide valuable professional development that aligns with the interest and goals of the individual and their career.

  4. Re-evaluate the job description of the employee with the employee perhaps there are other tasks/things that might ignite their fire and benefit the company.

  5. Issue a cultural assessment to everyone to get a gauge if it’s the one employee or is there a pattern across all employees that could be addressed as a company concern.

By recognizing the signs of “quiet quitting” and taking steps to re-engage disengaged employees, organizations can preserve their talent, boost productivity, and maintain a healthy workplace culture.

But let’s all agree to just stop calling it “quiet quitting” and start treating people with respect, including respecting boundaries.


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