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Why Quiet Quitters Make Great Candidates

Why Quiet Quitters Make Great Candidates

Why Quiet Quitters Make Great CandidatesBy Alex Dick, the founder and CEO of Alexander Lyons Solutions (ALS)

What is Quiet Quitting?

Over the past few months, you’d have been hard pushed to open LinkedIn without coming across at least one connection adding their two cents into the quiet quitting debate. This so-called trend sees employees strictly adhering to the responsibilities laid out in their contracts and working their allotted hours – nothing more, nothing less. To put it simply, quiet quitting is all about acting your wage.

While quiet quitting may be a new term, it certainly isn’t a new phenomenon. Employees have been doing this for years. Many workers ‘quiet-quit’ because they are keen to move on but fear economic uncertainty; others may have amassed benefits over years of service they are unwilling to give up; alternatively, they may be worried about scarce opportunities in their industry. There are numerous factors that could play a part in an employee’s decision to slow down, rather than get out.

However, at present, it appears a wave of employees are feeling driven into quiet quitting because of the immense changes the pandemic brought. Workers have taken the time to reflect and reprioritise the things they have going on in their lives; rising inflation and stagnant salaries have made employees feel that they are working harder for less; and, with conversations around mental health on the rise, people are putting self-care first.

There is an air of disengagement, with Gallup reporting that just 8% of UK employees feel engaged at work – the lowest out of both Western Europe and the USA. According to figures from the ADP Research Institute, one in ten people are working 20 additional hours unpaid, per week. What’s more? In the UK, 53% of employers acknowledge that their teams are working additional hours every day, without extra compensation. Being expected to work more for the same pay is essentially being demoted, and as a result, workers are rebelling due to exhaustion, burnout, or just simply because they want to put themselves first.

Taking Time to Reflect

Given that there has been some negative press associated with quiet quitting, feelings of guilt can arise, but it is completely normal. Moreover, it is important for those who are taking a step back, due to disengagement, to relish in the positives that can be found in an otherwise unfortunate circumstance. When workers feel less obliged to consistently work out of hours, their time can be dedicated to reflecting on their boundaries and what new experiences could lie ahead for them.

Boundaries are one of the many business buzz words we’re hearing at the moment, and with good reason. Noting the stats on overworking mentioned earlier, it seems that more people are realising the importance of work-life balance, and how boundaries play a significant role in maintaining a happy and healthy attitude towards work; with quiet quitting just one of those boundaries being broadly implemented by teams across the world.

If you are one of the 85% of workers worldwide thought to be quiet quitting, according to Gallup’s findings, then congratulations, you are successfully committing to your boundaries. This will hold you in great stead when you look to move on in your career. Outlining what you will and won’t tolerate in the workplace is always easier laid out when you join somewhere new, rather than when you’ve been overruling your own limits in a job you’ve had for a while. Additionally, standing firm on your boundaries means, if you choose to look elsewhere for employment, you can feel confident in the fact you know what you want from a prospective role, and that the organisation will be a good fit for you.

Are Quiet Quitters Ready for Change?

With that in mind, for those who are feeling unmotivated at their current employer, it might just be the right time to think about what is next. Many people who are quiet quitting haven’t even considered moving on for assorted reasons, be it due to economic responsibilities, the fear of lesser benefits and favourability, or simply because they are unaware of the endless possibilities that lie before them. The old saying ‘better the devil you know’ rings true here. However, such a mindset means that fantastic opportunities are passing people by.

Despite this, recruiters are gaining traction with those who are feeling discontent in their roles. When reaching out, we generally receive three responses to the question – ‘are you looking for a new opportunity?’ – a resounding ‘no’, an enthusiastic ‘yes’, or a ‘I haven’t considered moving on, but I would like to know more.’ We find the quiet quitters often come back with the latter. Here in lies the chance to introduce someone who is passive, and dissatisfied in their current position, to a much more exciting role they can feel truly motivated by. These are excellent candidates to be working with because they know what they deserve.

Quiet Quitting Isn’t All Bad

Despite the unsavoury stories we are hearing about quiet quitting, it isn’t all that bad. Those who are finding themselves taking a step back within environments that aren’t paying or rewarding them for their extra hours are rewarding themselves with time better spent evaluating their next move and what they genuinely want from their career. There should be no shame in quiet quitting. It is a conversation companies, recruiters and employees should be talking about openly to make better changes across industries. Equally, there should be no judgement of quiet quitters. As such, they form the perfect candidate; they know what they don’t want. And, what a delight for the recruiter who finds a great employee, a great new role they can once again feel content in.

Global Banking & Finance Review


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