Are you quietly firing your employees

Are you quietly firing your employees?

In the months after the pandemic proper, workers felt more empowered than ever. As companies fought a losing battle to hire enough of the right employees in the right places, employees found they were on the right side of the demand-supply equation and could start demanding more flexible work setups and higher pay, even as they took on second jobs and side hustles. While the balance of power hasn’t yet reverted to the status quo, the practice of quiet firing may start focusing workers’ minds.

What is Quiet Firing?

You may have already heard of quiet quitting – an employee doing the bare minimum at work without fully committing themselves to the job. Quiet firing is its antithesis. In this case, employers and managers intentionally create hostile work environments that aim to compel staff to leave of their own accord.

4 signs that you are quietly firing your staff

You may be quietly firing your workers even if you are not aware of it. Here are some telltale signs of this not-so-subtle practice:

  • You frequently ignore your workers.

Your employees may often find you unavailable, and you’re not sparing some of your time to hear their requests. You may even be skipping their reports during meetings, and they may need to step up to get their turn.

  • You keep certain employees out of the loop.

You may be holding meetings with only a handful of key workers, and the people that are supposedly involved are left in the dark. It happens more than once, and you may even find yourself comfortable with this routine.

  • You are not giving doling out raises 

One major sign that you really don’t want to keep certain workers is that you’re no longer giving them raises. This happens even if their colleagues get promoted to a better pay grade. 

  • You are either not giving enough assignments or have multiplied your employees’ workload.

The workers that you inadvertently choose to fire quietly are often relegated to the status of non-essential employees. They may end up being given minor assignments or dull, boring tasks. Alternatively, you may choose to give them more work than they can handle – a sure way to make them call it quits.

How Quiet Firing impacts the workplace

The objective of quiet firing is to drastically reduce a target’s morale, compelling them to leave their job voluntarily. Unlike mass terminations, though, its impact in the workplace can be managed. The gradual resignations will generate a gloomy work atmosphere, but you can make those who remain feel worthy of their position in one way or another.

Bottomline: Is Quiet Firing ethical?

Quiet firing can be an effective downsizing strategy. However, it can leave a bad taste in the mouths of those who are on the receiving end. As a result, you can expect a ton of negative Glassdoor reviews that can harm your brand. You may have culled your worker population, but it may be difficult to get your employee numbers back up when you need more feet on the ground.

About Sam P

EnterpriseZone Staff Writer

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