Happy Labor Day, quitters

September 4, 2022


Labor Day honors the American workforce, yet a trend to “not work” or "quiet quit” is gaining attention. 

“Quiet quitting” doesn’t mean someone quits their job. Instead, they refuse any extra responsibility or duties required to complete the task. In other words, if they aren’t getting paid for it and it’s not in the job description, they aren’t going to lift a finger. 

Does the project need 30 more minutes to complete? Too bad. They’re picking up their backpacks and going home. Can someone drop this off at the client’s office on the way home? Nope, not the quiet quitters. “We don’t go above and beyond” explained one post on TikTok.

In an interview with CNBC, Maggie Perkins, a young teacher explained, “I don’t volunteer for committees. I don’t stay late and do extra. I just teach my classes.”

I can actually sympathize a bit with Maggie. My first year in the classroom was frustrating when I realized arriving early, staying late and taking work home wasn’t earning me any more money than those who slacked off… but here’s a newsflash; some careers like teaching, aren’t about the monetary reward. A hard working teacher does what he or she has to do in order to make the students successful. I felt as rich as a king when my student’s test scores improved at a higher percentage than even the most experienced teachers. Hard work pays off. 

The good thing about quiet quitting is employees refuse to get stressed out about their jobs. They leave work issues at the office so they can enjoy life at home. No one can argue with that, but when the detached attitude impedes the overall quality and atmosphere of the business, then things get sticky. 

One man in his mid-40s reported having to take on extra work since the younger people on his sales team mentally “checked out” and didn’t  take an interest in following up on clients. “They’d rather leave things hanging than miss their coffee break” he said. 

"Get your own cat out of the tree. I'm off duty."

Most business owners at one time or the other have shown up on the weekends to scrub toilets. Going above and beyond keeps things going. No one likes it, but that’s the way the business world works. 

Oh! But they’re the business owners. — Exactly.

I predict quiet quitters will cry “unfair” when their hard working co-workers are promoted over them, given raises or presented the holy grail of employment — a trip to Cancun. They’ll snap like a little twig and say, “I just can’t seem to get ahead.” 

We’re created to be productive and work. It brings satisfaction and accomplishment. 

Pitching in to make sure the work gets done is what decent grown-ups do. 

Source: CNBC, Wall Street Journal, TikTok and NYTimes.

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