HR seems to be inundated with buzzwords at the moment. Somewhat understandably so, too, as the industry gets to grips with recruitment and retention problems. The employment landscape seems to be in a constant state of flux and thought leaders and influencers are regularly coming up with new HR jargon to sum up the issues of the day concisely. The latest example of this is ‘quiet thriving,’ something which has been touted as a potential antidote to ‘quiet quitting’ and ‘resenteeism,’ which has been affecting many organizations over the past year.
What is “quiet Quitting”?
You’ve probably heard the term “quiet quit” before. It describes employees who do the work they are paid to perform but don’t go ‘above and beyond’ or take on additional duties.
Quiet quitting is a relatively recent term. However, the behaviors and reasons for quitting that it illustrates are likely to have been happening in the workplace since the dawn of time. Since the pandemic, the power balance has shifted dramatically in favor of the employee. This is now more widely recognized as HR, and business leaders are more aware of creating working environments conducive to attracting talent.
What is “resenteeism”?
Imagine quiet quitting but amplified. Presenteeism is the feeling that an employee has when they stay in their position despite being unhappy.
It differs slightly from quiet quitting in that “quiet quitters” are happy to do the minimum in order to remain in their current job. Resentiers, on the contrary, are unhappy in their career but feel they can’t leave because of circumstances. It could be because of concerns about job security, the cost of living, or a lack of enticing alternatives.
You may be more aware than ever of the symptoms of quiet quitting among your employees. In fact, you might even be actively looking for them and addressing them. Resenteeism is characterized by similar signs: disengagement and a lack of enthusiasm, as well as a visible level of unhappiness. You may also notice deterioration in the quality and quantity of output.
What is “quiet flourishing,” and could it be a remedy?
The Washington Post article by Lesley Alderman, a psychotherapist, describes employees who make it their mission to change their workday to improve their mental health. They feel more motivated and fulfilled at their jobs.
This is based on the idea that presenteeism or quiet quitting can create a vicious cycle. It may be that external factors cause a person to disengage, and then they do the minimum or display other negative behaviors. However, a prolonged period of this mindset will only exacerbate negative feelings and eventually lead to burnout or a lack of satisfaction.
Quiet thriving is about making small, incremental changes to inspire productivity and passion. This could include a variety of activities, such as taking short fun breaks, building relationships with colleagues, or rewarding and celebrating one’s achievements.
Can HR inspire quiet thriving?
HR cannot force quiet flourishing to occur. As mentioned above, it is the employee’s responsibility to recognize their issues and make the necessary changes. HR can identify early signs that someone may be a “quiet quitter” or “resentful.”
It is important to have regular 1:1 interactions with your employees. Conversations in a confidential, informal, and pressure-free environment encourage employees to be open and honest about their concerns about the workplace. HR professionals can use these conversations to suggest ways that the employee could incorporate more fun, engaging activities into their day. They may also ask questions about what they enjoy the most about work or what they would like to learn or take on more responsibility. HR professionals can guide employees in the right direction to increase their enjoyment and satisfaction.
If you want to improve employee engagement within your organization, you can benefit from the suite of tools NaturalHR software offers. It provides HR with tools to monitor employee sentiment, such as employee recognition and pulse surveys.