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Why So Many Employees Are “Quietly Quitting” and What Leadership Can Do to Prevent It



Summary:

On this episode of FM Evolution, host Shawn Black sits down with Jim Robinson, CEO of CGP Maintenance and Construction Services. Jim is also an author, speaker, certified business coach, and chairman of a nonprofit. Throughout Jim’s thirty-seven years as CEO of CGP Maintenance and Construction Services, he has successfully led his team through periods of uncertainty and developed a winning culture in the process. In this episode, Shawn and Jim discuss the trend of quiet quitting, how the economy impacts employee retention, and strategies leaders can employ to discourage employees from leaving.

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Show Notes:

(0:40) Introduction to Jim

(2:27) Defining Quiet Quitting

(5:57) The Effects of a Gig Economy

(7:48) Impacts of Quiet Quitting

(9:49) Individuals Most Likely to Quit Quietly

(11:41) Leadership's Influence on Quiet Quitting

(18:44) Signs of Quiet Quitting

(23:56) How to Combat Quiet Quitting

(29:07) Closing Thoughts

Links:

Shawn Black

Jim Robinson

CGP Maintenance and Construction Services

Quotes:

“Entry level [employees] working from home is an error. In my opinion, that’s a mistake we have to correct in the corporate world. We have to make it more inviting and give these individuals a voice because that’s what they’re trying to do. They’re trying to establish a voice that says, ‘Hear me now.’” - Jim Robinson, (3:44)

“I’m suggesting that we have to evolve in how we manage people. A person that’s quiet quitting isn’t quiet about anything. They’re being extremely vocal, and we have to pay attention to what that truly means. They’re speaking loud, just not to us.” - Jim Robinson, (8:17)

“It goes back to they’re trying to find a voice and for whatever reason, they feel as though in hurting somebody else they will get a voice. So we have to make sure we have a dialogue to help them find a way to win. Quitting is not a win. It’s a complete disservice to themselves.” - Jim Robinson, (19:23)

“There’s no privilege in being a leader. The quiet quitter thinks there’s a privilege being the one with all the responsibilities, but it’s heavy. There’s a lot of leaders that are treading lightly on thin ice, but true leaders rock the boat, make a difference, and change some lives.” - Jim Robinson, (25:33)

Why So Many Employees Are “Quietly Quitting” and What Leadership Can Do to Prevent It

On this episode of FM Evolution, host Shawn Black sits down with Jim Robinson, CEO of CGP Maintenance and Construction Services. Jim is also an author, speaker, certified business coach, and chairman of a nonprofit. Throughout Jim’s thirty-seven years as CEO of CGP Maintenance and Construction Services, he has successfully led his team through periods of uncertainty and developed a winning culture in the process. In this episode, Shawn and Jim discuss the trend of quiet quitting, how the economy impacts employee retention, and strategies leaders can employ to discourage employees from leaving.

Situations That Prompt Quiet Quitting

When people hear the term quiet quitting, it’s often misunderstood as individuals leaving their jobs without telling anybody. However, quiet quitting actually refers to individuals who are still employed but who have disconnected from their team or company. Their disengagement can look like a variety of things, such as not completing tasks, not participating in meetings, etc. Unfortunately, the increase in remote workers, as well as the ongoing gig economy, has resulted in an escalation of quiet quitting because it’s easier for employees to separate themselves when they aren’t in a social office setting.

Moreover, it’s predominantly entry-level employees participating in quiet quitting because they don’t feel like they have the opportunity to share their knowledge in an inclusive environment. Therefore, when they quit quietly, it provides them with a sense of notoriety and brings them attention because they’re still getting paid even though they’re not finishing their work or being satisfactory team members. To combat this, when a company employs mostly remote workers, it’s critical to have checks and balances that allow employees to feel heard.

“Entry level [employees] working from home is an error. In my opinion, that’s a mistake we have to correct in the corporate world. We have to make it more inviting and give these individuals a voice because that’s what they’re trying to do. They’re trying to establish a voice that says, ‘Hear me now.’” - Jim Robinson, (3:44)

Discouraging Quiet Quitting

There are a multitude of ways for company leaders to combat quiet quitting, but one of the most effective is keeping an ongoing, honest dialogue with their employees. It’s having regular meetings where team members have a safe space to voice their ideas, knowledge, problems, and concerns. This is also a time when leaders can receive feedback, celebrate wins, and keep a pulse on the culture of the workplace. Furthermore, constant communication creates an accountable workplace because everyone has equal opportunities to present issues and receive solutions.

“It goes back to they’re trying to find a voice and for whatever reason, they feel as though in hurting somebody else they will get a voice. So we have to make sure we have a dialogue to help them find a way to win. Quitting is not a win. It’s a complete disservice to themselves.” - Jim Robinson, (19:23)

An effective way that leaders can gauge if an employee is quietly quitting is by evaluating their productivity. If an employee’s performance starts to decline, there needs to be an immediate conversation with that employee about why they’re no longer motivated. Likewise, if management has their employees' best interest in mind, it’s important to convey that quiet quitting is a disservice to themselves, not the company, because the corporation can always hire another individual as a replacement.

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