There’s a Cure for Quiet Quitting - It’s the question we have been mulling for years - Why?

Natalie Simmons
November 9, 2022

If you haven’t yet heard about the idea of ‘quiet quitting’, I’d have to ask you where you’ve been the last 12 months. COVID-19’s effects on the workplace were significant and manifold. One of the slow burn changes to emerge from the pandemic is ‘quiet quitting’ - the idea that you only do exactly what you’re being paid to do. No more, no less. No late nights or additional weekend workathons. Another name for it is ‘acting your wage’.

The Pandemic fundamentally changed the way workers considered their career. If they weren’t quiet quitting, they were actually quitting. See the ‘great resignation’. In 2021, 73% of employees said they wanted to have flexible working arrangements, according to Microsoft’s 2021 Work Trend Index report. Businesses large and small are making it a reality. But that’s really just the ‘What’ and the ‘How’. 

The lingering, niggling, and hard to quantify effect of Covid-19 on employees concerns the ‘Why’. More and more people are asking themselves why they do what they do. They’re looking for opportunities to thrive in the workplace. Gen-Z (the generation forming the bulk of the new workplace cohort) is under particular strain. Engagement is under threat.

What’s the silver lining to this cloud then? Is it a challenge or an opportunity? Of course it’s both, but for every challenge, there is a unique opportunity to engage your workforce.

I know a 2-column table isn’t the silver bullet for the challenges organisations face today. But we have to eat the elephant one bite at a time, right? You can begin to face these challenges (and more) with a stronger focus on your company Purpose. It doesn’t matter if you make packaging, or work boots, or sell machine parts, or insurance, or deliver bulky, refrigerated goods. Whatever your product or service, no business is immune to the idea that the majority of their employees want to believe that they work for one of the good guys. A clear sense of Purpose, supported by your processes and believed in by your people, will have a positive impact on many things, including your bottom line.

A great place to start is by gathering the data that will shed some light on your workforce’s state of mind. At Barefoot Citizens Consulting, we have a way to capture what we call an ENPS - Employee Net Purpose Score. We know that asking the right questions is the key to any successful poll. The Barefoot Citizens Consulting ENPS will reveal the insights concerning your company Purpose that will, in turn, form the foundation for your employee engagement strategy.

All of us are regrouping and rearranging priorities as they relate to the Environment, Social and Governance issues facing the world, and there is a genuine opportunity to engage your people in helping this become a reality. They don’t just want good leadership, they want to be engaged in doing good themselves. There are a number of opportunities to engage your teams, whether it’s a Solve the 17 group activity focused on solving one of the UN Sustainable Development Goals or integrating sustainability and ESG learning into your company’s L&D pathways. These are just a few of the ways we work to not only engage your teams but provide a platform for them to mobilise their Purpose into action. 

The opportunity of quiet quitting is real - harnessing the potential of this effort gap will not only turn the phenomena around, it has the potential to drive productivity further. With an engaged workforce we are more productive, drive deeper customer loyalty, and see healthier, sustainable financial results.

To learn more about our multiple solutions, providing a platform for your people to feel engaged personally and professionally, get in touch today and be part of the community of corporations shaping a better tomorrow.