Quiet Quitting: Motives and Ways to Deal with an Emerging Trend

Breaking the Silence: How an organization can understand and tackle Quiet Quitting with a Six-Step iterative cycle.

Quiet Quitting: Motives and Ways to Deal with an Emerging Trend
Breaking the Silence - Photo by Kristina Flour | Unsplash


Quiet Quitting refers to employees who no longer go "above and beyond" at work, opposing the idea that labor defines a person's worth. This study explores how organizations can address this phenomenon, focusing on Switzerland's creative and event industries. It examines the motives and behaviors of Quiet Quitting, providing insights into organizational behavior, leadership, and employee motivation. The research aims to understand Quiet Quitting and its implications for employee engagement and productivity. The study offers a comprehensive analysis and a concrete approach to how to deal with phenomena.


The paper addresses a phenomenon that has recently become popular in the workplace where employees no longer go above and beyond for their employers. Understanding and dealing with Quiet Quitting is crucial for organizations as it can impact employee engagement, productivity, and, ultimately, the company's overall performance.

The paper examines persons with a background in the creative and event industries, which are often characterized by highly committed employees. Practitioners gain insights and discover an approach through a newly designed iterative cycle, which ensures that the company continuously evolves with the changing needs of employees.


The analysis shows that "Quiet Quitting" does not have a consistent profile but offers potential as a means of achieving work-life balance. Although the term was only recently characterized, little suggests that the phenomenon itself is new. However, the study uncovers external triggers such as the COVID-19 pandemic that caused individuals to critically examine their commitment in regard to their work performance, implying that Quiet Quitting might have become a popular phenomenon due to the pandemic.

Based on a six-step approach, the paper offers organizations a tool for adapting to the changing needs of employees.

Implications for practitioners

  • Offers practical recommendations for effectively managing and adapting to the changing needs of employees based on a six-step, iterative approach
  • Contributes a compiled list of factors that foster Quiet Quitting
  • Provides a comprehensive understanding of Quiet Quitting highlighting the phenomenon’s unique characteristics and draws a historical comparison with similar phenomena from the past


The research design chosen was qualitative social research within the interpretative paradigm, and an exploratory research design was justified due to the lack of existing research on the topic. Grounded theory methodology was employed for both data collection and analysis. 12 Personal interviews using a semi-structured questionnaire were conducted to collect data on willingness to perform and experiences with Quiet Quitting. The collected data were analyzed using open, axial, and selective coding procedures. The analysis resulted in forming a theoretical model to answer the research question.