Workplace cultures are ever shifting. New bosses, new employees, or even a change of location can bring about an entirely different set of rules and actions for an office space. One of the more widespread changes in workplace culture has been the reveal of “quiet” actions, such as quiet quitting, quiet firing, and, now, quiet hiring.
The “quiet” actions have almost always existed in some capacity, but, now that we are speaking about them openly, they have become easier to address. Talking about actions like these opens up the communication in a workplace to create a healthier and more trustworthy community. Keep reading below to learn about each of these actions and how to address them.
Quiet quitting happens when employees are looking to quit but are not yet ready to actually do so. While they look for other jobs or determine if they want to stay with the company, the employee will slow their efforts at work down until they are, essentially, doing nothing outside of the bare minimum.
Often, this happens when employees feel wronged or burnt out, so it can feel justifiable to those quitting, but there are better ways to handle these feelings in a workplace. Ask your boss to set aside time for you two to talk and discuss either what has bothered you or left you feeling excessively drained. If there are genuine reasons why this is happening, a dedicated leader should be able to start helping you solve the issues immediately.
If, for any reason, you cannot go directly to an immediate superior, going to a ruling body that enforces the organization’s rules, such as human resources, is a next great step. Keep track of when the situation happens, who else was there, and what happened before bringing it to HR to talk about.
Keep in mind that these solutions only work when the reason you are feeling this way is in the workplace. If life outside is what is bearing down on you, it is unlikely that your company will be the one to help you. If you are feeling mentally or emotionally drained or unbalanced, then therapy and other healthy and helpful outlets are going to be much more productive in the long run.
Quiet firing is similar to quiet quitting, but the actions come from the employers. Employers aim to have employees quit by decreasing things like hours or benefits, or entirely stop providing support and development opportunities for employees. These actions force employees to look elsewhere for a new role that can sustain them.
Quiet firing often happens when employers are unable to adapt or adjust to new situations, be them culture changes or new expectations in a workplace. They are often not malicious acts and instead usually come from a place of putting-off an issue until a solution is found. Either the solution is found with a small delay or, such is the case with quiet firing, the person affected leaves and the situation is resolved that way.
In these cases, if you are an employer, the truth is that avoiding the hard conversation that comes with letting people go will do more damage to team morale than anything else. Employees like to know that they can depend on their management, but if they notice others getting shunned quietly, then they will have a hard time stepping forward for help when necessary.
Quiet hiring is a bit different from the other two actions in that it is often perceived as positive. This happens when a company shifts your job title or job focus to something different without previous conversation. This happens when companies have a hole in the workforce that they are looking to fill fast or when they are restructuring jobs and are looking at different ways they can rationalize keeping an employee.
This is usually perceived as positive because it involves you staying with the company, usually avoiding a layoff, and can come with additional benefits, such as pay increases. These potential advantages and new challenges can be exactly what some people need in their workplace, but that does not mean that everyone should be expected to be fine with it immediately.
Employees who are looking for a specific career path, those who enjoy their current work, or those who would be shifted to a more constricting or lower paying role are likely to be upset. Springing a sudden job change on them without forewarning can lead to them feeling trapped and uncomfortable, which will, inevitably, lead them to find a new job.
Whether you have quietly hired or you are being quietly hired, you must remember that communication is key. If the situation is happening or has already happened, both sides should share information as to why the change is happening, why they were chosen, and what happens if the offer is refused. From then on, giving employees the time to think about the role is a good step, as it will help ensure that they accept the role because they want it, not just to temporarily keep themselves from being jobless.
While it can be easy to reason with ourselves that our intentions are not hurtful, any of these quiet actions could damage businesses, relationships, or even quality of care given to customers and patients. Talking about these actions as a team can help facilitate a more trusting and motivated workforce as everyone will understand the meaning behind the actions without feeling as though they have to guess.
If you are looking to bring in ideal employees that fit your workplace culture, then working with a dedicated recruiter is a great way to go. If you are hiring, connect with a recruiter by clicking here and let them help you find exactly who you are looking for. If you are looking for a new job, you can click here to send us an updated resume or here to take a look at our job listings. Apply today and see if these open opportunities are a good fit for you!