How to Tell if Employees Are “Quiet Quitting”

We’ve discussed common reasons employees are quitting and how you can address these issues in order to prevent it. Issues including burnout, feeling undervalued, and lack of advancement are among the top reasons. Some solutions to this are providing open communication, clear expectations, and work-life balance in order to prevent employee turnover.

But did you know that there is a new trend involving employee retention taking the internet and business alike by storm?

This new trend is called “Quiet Quitting.” It’s a term used to describe the phenomenon of employees gradually disengaging from their work over time either because they’ve lost interest or are no longer invested in their work or the company.

To clarify, quiet quitting doesn’t necessarily mean that an employee will outright quit their job right away. But rather they’re quitting the idea of going above and beyond. In other words, they are still performing their duties but no longer subscribing to the company culture and the future of the job itself.

This can be a difficult situation for businesses to deal with because it affects business growth and retention rates as well as employee moral. Unhappy employees are more likely to disengage from their work and start looking for other opportunities. This can be costly for your business as it affects lost productivity and increases training and recruiting new employees.

Fortunately, there are 5 things you can look out for that may indicate that an employee is quiet quitting:

1. Declining Performance

If an employee’s work quality or quantity starts to decline, it may be a sign that they’re no longer invested in their job and furthermore the company. Behaviors such as making mistakes, low quality work, and not meeting goals are all indicators of this. This is especially true if the decline in productivity is accompanied by a negative change in attitude.

The first sign in declining performance is if employees are making more mistakes in their work. This may be a sign that they are no longer paying attention to their tasks, or simply don’t feel motivated to do their best. The next sign is if employees are producing subpar and low quality efforts. This also indicates a lack of interest in their job functions as they are taking longer to complete their tasks and producing less output. Consequently, key performance indicators and daily goal benchmarks are not met and productivity is lost.

If you notice these signs in declining performance, it’s important to address them with the employee as soon as possible. Start by conducting an informal meeting with the employee to discuss the situation. Make sure to focus on the employee experience by addressing what is causing the decline and how you can help. If the problem is not resolved after this meeting, you may need to take further action, such as putting the employee on a Performance Improvement Plan (PIP).

2. Increased Absences

If you notice your employees quality of work declining, chances are their attendance will also decline. Increased absences is a good indicator of lack of interest in their current role or the company itself.

Employees who are absent more frequently than normal are generally less invested in their job functions and the company as a whole. Examples of this includes coming in late, taking more sick days than normal, or last minute requests for time off. This can lead to a decline in employee moral as this causes conflict between colleagues. This can also lead to a decline in work quality, as employees who are disengaged are less likely to put forth their best effort. All of this can have a negative impact on the company as a whole, so it’s important to address these absences as soon as possible and work with the employee to understand the root cause of their disengagement.

3. No Longer Engaged in Their Work

If you notice that an employee seems checked out and uninterested in their work, it could be a sign that they’re quiet quitting. If the employee is always looking for shortcuts or ways to do less work, it could be a sign that they’re not motivated anymore. This type of behavior often leads to subpar work and can drag down the rest of the team. If you notice an employee engaging in this behavior, it’s important to have a conversation with them about their work ethic and expectations for quality results.

Another factor that contributes to this is if they are taking advantage of professional development or training opportunities. if they have no drive to progress, it could be a sign that they’re not invested in their future at the company. Employees who are looking to move up within a company will usually jump at the chance to develop new skills or expand their knowledge base. If your employees aren’t taking advantage of these opportunities, it may be time to have a discussion about their long-term goals.

4. Not Contributing to Team Projects

In order for a team to be successful, every member needs to contribute their fair share. If you notice that an employee is shirking their responsibilities or not pulling their weight on team projects, it could be a sign that they don’t care about the company’s success anymore. It’s important to address this because it directly impacts the team’s ability to meet its goals. If you notice this happening, it’s important to have a conversation with the employee about their commitment to the team and the company as a whole.

Also address why they are not contributing as much. It may be that they feel their contributions are not being heard or valued- so what’s the point? Team leaders can offer support in team projects by staying in communication and being available when needed, but not smothering them. Too much pressure and little flexibility will drive them away. So, in order to retain staff and promote productivity, management should encourage and value their team’s contributions.

5. Less Engaged in Company Activities

If you notice your employees are pulling away from the team, they are not likely to engage in company events outside of their daily work as well. This could be a sign that they no longer mesh with the company culture or see a future where they are at. Look out for behaviors such as skipping team-building events, avoiding socializing with co-workers, or no longer volunteering for activities.

However, there are things you can do to get them re-engaged in company activities. Managers can try a variety of methods to encourage employee participation, including making sure employees have a clear understanding of the event’s purpose and how it will benefit them. When employees see that an event is relevant and beneficial to them personally, they are more likely to participate. Another way to encourage employee involvement is by offering incentives for attendance such as snacks, gift cards or extra time off. This can be a great way to motivate employees and get them engaged in company culture. With their buy-in, they are more likely to stay with the company longer.


As a manager, it’s important to keep an eye on employee morale so you can catch problems early on before they become bigger issues. Look out for these warnings signs such as increased absences, subpar work ethic, blowing off team responsibilities, and lack of engagement in company activities. If you notice any of these red flags, have an honest conversation with your employees about what’s going on and see if there’s anything you can do to help them feel more satisfied in their current role. This will help to improve their outlook and the team’s as well which will get productivity back on track.

Contact us or check out our services for more workplace solutions on employee retention.