The Benefits of Quiet Managing

It seems like everywhere you turn, the term quiet quitting has taken over the internet and subsequently is the buzzword among many of our clients. 

Recently, someone on LinkedIn was sharing the idea that leaders should start a trend of quiet managing. This idea was intriguing. But what does it mean? 

  • Ceasing checking employee start and stop times
  • Allowing employees the flexibility to work from where they want
  • Encouraging time off guilt-free
  • Removing distractions and barriers to success
  • No longer having unnecessary meetings (haven’t we all been in a meeting that we thought, this could’ve been an email)
  • Listening and being open to receiving feedback about your management style
  • Providing employees what they need to be successful and getting out of their way; TRUSTING them to deliver

Trust is the key factor. As an employee, you have to trust that your company will pay you accurately and on time, provide you with fair compensation for not only the work you are doing but also the skills, knowledge, and abilities you bring to the workplace, and provide you with a sense of security – so long as you are performing your job at or above the organization’s standards. When an employee accepts a job offer, they are agreeing to the terms set forth in employment agreement with your company (so long as they are legal and ethical). As an employer you are paying this employee to willingly do their job well. When you hire the right person, they are going to bring their best every single day and living the company’s values. When you have these types of players on the team, they will only need you to give them direction, not micromanage them to death. This is where trusting your staff is part of the equation as well.

At GritHR, we’re surprised that this is emerging as a new trend as this has been our modus operandi since day one. As a leader of people and/or manager of a function you are accountable to delivering on results. However, micromanaging is not the way to get there. If you want to be a quiet manager and get the best results out of your people, you must operate with a high level of trust in them to get the job done. 

Does this mean you stop setting goals, KPIs, and having 1:1s? No, you still do all of these things. But goals and KPIs are set and direction has been given, get out of the way and let the magic happen. When your team believes you trust them, they feel empowered to get into a state of Flow and they’re able to do their best work. And, guess what? When they need help or guidance from you, they’re going to ask. 

As a manager, you move into a support role for your team and free up your time to be more strategic instead of being buried with the day-to-day because you’ve stopped leading by structure and administration, by finding this balance as a leader, your employees are inherently going to have balance as well in their lives and this circles back to part of the definition of quiet quitting. These are not employees that want to leave their jobs, these are employees that are setting boundaries and asking for work-life balance, but in a passive aggressive way. For example, when they see you working late and night and sending emails, they feel as though they are underperforming if they are not doing the same. How do you fix this? Lead by example – log off at the same time they do, or shortly after. If you can’t then set a delay delivery on that email until the next morning. When you are on PTO, actually be away from work; stop making yourself available. By doing these things, you are showing your employees that the culture matters, their feelings matter, and their balance matters.

At the end of the day, as a leader, employees should be valued for what they bring to the table and the results of their efforts. Not for working overtime, working all hours of the night, and taking on so many extra projects that they end up burning out.

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