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Quitting vs. Gritting

What if quiet quitting has to do with more than just burnout? Maybe quiet quitting has to do with not having enough grit, long-term vision, and an overdose of entitlement. One contributor of quiet quitting could be that people are more disconnected from coworkers than ever before, and at the same time, prefer to work from home. Regardless of the reasons behind quitting, effective leadership could make a significant shift in this current trend. Strong leaders can inspire others toward their next level of extraordinary, equip their team members to overcome challenges, motivate them to conquer greater goals, and help them discover their superpowers. Healthy leaders intentionally establish a company culture that creates space for their teams to take root, remain grounded through the inevitable storms, and celebrate the harvest together. Strong leaders can overpower this trend of quiet quitting and help others dig deep and find their grit.

Theories behind this trend of quiet quitting include employees not wanting to feel pressure to contribute anything beyond their employee contract. That’s ideal, of course. However, what about contributing to something bigger than self? What about believing in the mission of the organization, wanting to collaborate, and committing to moving the mission of the organization forward? What about the factors that are beyond personal schedules, work/life balance, and desired time off? What about wanting to learn from mentors who have been at the organization for over a decade? There are many treasures that are lost by regular job hopping.

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Another reason for quiet quitting is that younger generations want to find purpose and passion in their jobs. There is less separation between personal and professional commitments and pursuits. As a leadership coach, I am fanatical about values. However, know your values in advance and don’t waiver from them. If the mission of an organization goes directly against your values, don’t take the job in the first place. Know your values and stand strong in them. Is there opportunity to incorporate personal values in the workplace? Perhaps leaders can create opportunities to support non-profits that align with individual passion. Perhaps there could be volunteer opportunities that would allow team-building and personal mission to be combined. How can leaders encourage others to dig deep for grit?

Another component worth consideration is employees wanting jobs that are strictly remote. Some felt stranded when it came to working from home in 2020, but now many consider being able to sport their waist-high fashion a preferred option. Avoiding unpredictable commutes, having a greater sense of autonomy, and being able to have multiple tabs open while attending a meeting that goes off track are threatened when companies want to transition back to in-person or hybrid. Leaders need to be intentional about creating a culture of connection and inspiration. Providing consistent motivation, creating an atmosphere that fosters growth in the office, and having productive meetings can all significantly help with minimizing the dread of going back to the office.

Quietly quitting can also be the result of people feeling underpaid. People don’t want to continue working for the organization, let alone put in anything extra, if they don’t feel appropriately compensated. The salary doesn’t reflect their efforts or ability, so therefore, might as well quit. While there is a very practical need for money, there seems to be a bigger issue than the size of the paycheck. More than money, the deeper root seems to be an overall sense of feeling undervalued. Leaders should consistently express appreciation and recognize the contributions made by the team. That requires leaders to be aware and watchful of how others are investing beyond themselves. How can leaders create a culture of celebrating one another’s wins along the way? Do you quietly quit or dig deep for grit?

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Of course, there are other factors fueling the quiet-quitting trend, but let’s be real. Leaders can create environments that cultivate transformation for individuals and the entire organization. And yes, team members can step up, dig deep for grit, and press on for something bigger than themselves. Which will you choose? Quietly quit or dig deep for grit?

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