Let’s talk about quiet quitting.
If you’re not familiar with this hot topic, it describes employees who have “quit” going beyond the duties of their job descriptions.
It’s a bit of a controversial subject. Some employees see it as a way of taking back their power, defining clear boundaries between “work” and “life”. Some leaders, on the other hand, worry it’s a sign their people are mentally checking out.
Either way, it’s a reflection of employee engagement (or lack thereof).
According to a recent Gallup survey of almost 15,000 US employees, “engaged” employees now outnumber the “disengaged” ones by a mere 2 to 1 margin. Three years ago (pre-pandemic), it was closer to 3 to 1.
So, if you’re a leader (and if you’ve read my recent post, you know you ARE), how do you quickly start to RE-ENGAGE your employees and/or team members?
ACKNOWLEDGE. YOUR. PEOPLE.
It’s such a simple tool, but it works (and acknowledging someone doesn’t mean you necessarily agree with them).
Acknowledgment can relieve some of their stress and frustration. It can make them feel heard. It can help them move forward. And it can show them you’re listening globally to what they’re saying, thinking, and feeling.
There are a few powerful ways to put this into practice.
One technique is called “mirroring” – a way to almost imitate the person you’re communicating with. Are they speaking slowly? Then speak a little slower. Are their elbows on the desk? Then place your elbows on the desk too. Don’t be creepy about it though, ok? Subtlety is key.
Another acknowledgment technique demonstrates you are deeply listening. It may sound something like this:
“If I’m hearing you correctly…”
“In other words…”
“To make sure I got what you said, ….”
“So when X happens, then you…”
Here’s the crux of it: when your people feel truly heard, they are more likely to engage.
And by the way: here’s a nice added benefit of engagement — it’s profitable. Additional Gallup data shows that companies with highly engaged employees will outperform their competitors by 147%.
The bottom line is that YOUR bottom line does better when you make a genuine investment in acknowledging those around you.
So…if I’m hearing you correctly.. you’re concerned about quiet quitting and a lack of engagement? (see what I did there).
How soon are you willing to start to practice acknowledgment?