Managers must ‘solve this problem’ of quiet quitting, Davos leaders say

‘It’s a top-down leader’s job to solve this problem. We need to communicate very differently’

That was Vimeo CEO Anjali Sud speaking at the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos this week about the “quiet quitting” phenomenon that has swept the globe.

Quiet quitting is often described as employees doing the bare minimum of work at their jobs, or setting higher boundaries with management, in order to create a healthier work-life balance and focus more of their time of non-office activities. A recent Gallup poll found that such “quiet quitters” make up 50% of the U.S. workforce.

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And Sud is placing the onus on managers and business leaders to stop quiet quitting by empowering their employees, and listening to their workers, to make a more optimal work environment.

Quiet quitting has become a big enough issue that it was given its own panel at Davos on Tuesday. The speakers discussing “Quiet Quitting and the Meaning of Work” included Vimeo’s Sud and organizational psychologist Adam Grant from the University of Pennsylvania, as well as managers and human resources professionals.

“Quiet quitting is a natural response to feeling your employer or boss has given up on you,” Grant said at the annual event in the Swiss ski resort town of Davos.

And Grant agreed with Sud that leaders and managers at companies are to blame for the recent surge in quiet quitting “more than anyone else.

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According to Gallup research, half of U.S. adult employees describe themselves as “not engaged” at work. The poll describes these individuals as people who “do the minimum required and are psychologically detached from their job.”

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“What we’re seeing right now is kind of a deterioration of the employee-employer relationship,” Jim Harter, chief scientist for Gallup’s workplace management practice, said about the study.

The data from Gallup listed several actionable items that managers can do to help increase employee satisfaction and discourage workers from quiet quitting, such as regular weekly chats, accountability for individual performance and showing workers how their work plays a part in the company’s mission. 

More on quiet quitting at MarketWatch:

Thinking about quiet quitting? You’re not alone. Quiet quitters make up half of the U.S. workforce, poll shows.

Opinion: I tried ‘quiet quitting’ before it had a name — and I’ve regretted it ever since

Opinion: Stock-market worry for 2023: Quiet quitting and working from home are bad for companies’ productivity

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