Everywhere you look, people are talking about quiet quitting. But what is quiet quitting, what are the misconceptions about quiet quitting, should you quiet quit your job, and what's the right way to do it? Let talk about it...
What is Quiet Quitting?
Quiet quitting isn't quitting your job at all. Instead, quiet quitting means you opt out of overachieving, doing ✨all of the things✨, and centering your identity on work. Basically, it's saying good-bye to always on hustle culture, and instead setting and keeping strong work life boundaries, meeting expectations at work (and nothing beyond), and finding fulfillment outside of your 9-5.
Basically, it's not new, just the word it. In fact, quiet quitting everything I've been talking about - but missing one thing, which we'll come back to, but first we need to talk about the misconceptions about quiet quitting.
Quiet Quitting is NOT...
The media coverage and commentary about quiet quitting has been, a bit extra. There are a lof of misconceptions in the conversations, and in how people are approaching quiet quitting their jobs and we need to break them down.
No one wants to work anymore
There's a reason that Kim K clip when viral AF. The sentiment that people don't want to work anymore is not new either. I recently saw another viral post about media coverage about people not wanting to work anymore dating back to the early 1900s.
Personally, from the conversations I've had with countless people, this isn't about not wanting to work - it's about refusing to be exploited anymore.
We've become constantly connected to work, and the expectation has become we're always on, coupled with our culture of overachievement... it's been an unhealthy framework for most people, and has led to a lot of burnout.
I see this as resetting to the good ol'days where we worked when we were at work and lived our lives when we weren't.
People who quiet quit are lazy
If valuing your time, doing your job to the expectations set by the company, and setting appropriate boundaries is lazy... we should all be lazy AF.
Again, we look to Slacker Chad who has been living by this ethos since the invention of the modern workplace. He hasn't just been praised for his work ethic - he's been promoted for it. This opens it up to all of us.
Quiet Quitting is STEALING from your company
We could have a whole conversation about time theft and if it's a thing. And if your approach is to do absolutely nothing, I think that's problematic. But that's not what quiet quitting is. Quiet quitting is meeting expectations. You know, the expectations set by the company when they hire for the role, determine compensation, and do performance appraisals. If a company has mis-set expectations... that's a them problem, and they need to take action, such as recreating job descriptions and reappraising the role (i.e. pay more - a lot more).
I've never really understood the people who advocate for performative work that goes into your own time, just like how I've never understood the fixation on the clock for salaried employees.
Quiet Quitting requires you to opt out of your ambition
Don't get me wrong, if you have decided the best approach to work for you is to NGAF, clock-in and clock-out and you don't care about how well you're paid... go off, I support you fully and wholly.
But quiet quitting doesn't mean you need to opt out of your ambition - and it certainly doesn't mean you need to opt out of top dollar pay raises, promotion opportunities, and even great performance reviews. In fact, I think quiet quitting supports these goals when done correctly (I'll tackle this in the next section).
Ultimiately, I think more more gives you more resources to enjoy your life, travel, and eventually achieve financial freedom so working becomes an option and not a requirement.
Quiet Quitting is risk free
I've cringed whenever I've seen videos preaching: yeah just *stop doing everything*... because that's gonna get people fired 😬
Meeting expectations should be the standard you are measured by, but perception outweighs reality. If your boss thinks you're working less they may perceive a decrease in performance... which can bite you when it comes to performance review time (even when you have the receipts that you're doing everything you should), and especially if your company is planning layoffs.
Perception management is really key here, and when you quiet quit the right way, your boss won't notice that you're working less. In fact, they may perceive an increase in performance, when you're working way less (how awesome is that!?).
Which leads us to the obvious question...
How To Quiet Quit the RIGHT Way
If you want the maintain job (and financial) stability while quiet quitting, or even continue your career advancement journey while you work less, this is how to do it:
Step 1: Get Clear
You need to be versed in the expectations of your role, what your boss (and their boss) is paying attention to), what is important, what isn't, and how your performance will be measured. This will guide you to know what you need to do / what metrics you need to achieve. This is also going to give you insight on what work you've been overperforming on that hasn't been helping your career progression.