How To Recognize Quiet Firing And Do Something About It

How To Recognize Quiet Firing And Do Something About It

Over the past ten years, quiet firing has become increasingly common. It happens when an employer tries to push an employee out of the company without firing them. Before you become a victim of this practice, learn the signs of it and find out how you should handle the situation.

What is Quiet Firing?

Quiet firing is a term that refers to an employer or manager who refuses to fire someone and instead makes them as uncomfortable as possible. Essentially, the company tries to force out the employee. They take various actions to make the employee uncomfortable or unable to succeed. Eventually, the employee quits on their own.

You might be wondering why employers opt for quiet firing over actual firing. Usually, an employer tries to quietly fire someone for one of several reasons. One common reason for quiet firing is to avoid conflict. Another common reason for this is to cut expenses. Oftentimes, it’s cheaper for an employer to quit than it is for an employer to fire them. An employer may also opt for quiet firing because the employee is underperforming. Rather than deal with the issue, the employer simply hopes the person quits.

Signs Your Employer is Quietly Firing You

Once you’re aware of quiet firing, you may be able to do something about it. Here are a few common signs that your company is trying to quietly fire you:

Stalling a Promotion

If you are due for a promotion but have yet to receive it, your employer could be trying to make you quit. This isn’t a case of not receiving a promotion but is more of a case of you being passed up for multiple opportunities. Usually, employers say things like, “You just weren’t the best fit” or “We’ll see what happens.”

You Deserve a Raise but are Denied

Your salary shouldn’t be stagnant. If you haven’t received a raise in years and others have, your employer could be trying to force you to quit. Even if you have received a raise, you should consider whether it’s equal to the raises of others in your organization.

Boring Work

Does your employer give you menial tasks? They should be fairly delegating the workload, but this won’t happen if they’re trying to make you quit. If you never receive meaningful tasks, it could be because you’re a victim of silent firing. Just keep in mind that all jobs require a degree of boring tasks. You should only have concerns if you seem to be the only person receiving menial duties.

More Red Tape

In an effort to make your life more difficult, an employer in the midst of quiet firing may create new, difficult policies. For instance, you might need to go through a lengthy approval process before you submit work. If simple tasks are now difficult bureaucratic processes, you should be wary.

Sudden Stoppage of New Tasks

Once an employer decides they want you to quit, they may bring an end to some of your tasks and projects. Meanwhile, other employees could have opportunities to lead or participate in new projects.

Dangling Promises

Does your employer seem to be procrastinating on your requests? One of the common signs of quiet firing is dangling promises. If you ask for a raise, your employer might say, “Not now.” They might ask you to wait six months for a performance review or meeting.

No Feedback

If a manager wants you out, they’ll stop offering you feedback. This is likely to be a sudden change from frequent feedback to radio silence. The employer plans on you leaving soon, so they won’t waste time trying to guide or train you.

Feeling of Exclusion

People being pushed out of their roles often feel excluded. Because people thrive on social interaction and acceptance, employers sometimes freeze out employees by excluding them. The exclusion isn’t usually obvious but is something you will slowly notice. For example, your co-workers might stop inviting you out for drinks. A manager may decline to bring you in for a group meeting. In any case, this is a sign that your employer doesn’t want you around.

Over or Under-Worked

Quiet firing is about making the employee so uncomfortable that they quit. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that employers tend to over or underwork the employees that they want to quit. If you have too much work to handle or can’t receive enough work to stay busy, you could be in trouble.

Unfair Treatment

Because of federal labor requirements, employers need to tread carefully with the way they treat employees. However, laws don’t protect you from unfair treatment under all circumstances. Your employer could favor other employees simply because they want you to quit.

What to Do About Quiet Firing

You don’t necessarily need to quit your job if you have a manager who is trying to force you to quit. Depending on your situation, there are a few things you can do.

Talk to Someone Higher Up

If one manager seems to be the only one who wants you to quit, take the conversation to someone above them. Schedule a meeting with a superior and explain some of the problems you’re experiencing. When you do this, don’t mention quiet firing. Rather, talk about your feelings of exclusion, being overworked, or anything else.

The other people in your organization might value you more than the manager. In fact, they may opt to fire the manager instead of you.

Learn Your HR Policies and Read Your Contract

Before you quit or take action, find out more about your company’s HR policies. Is the manager doing anything that violates those policies? If so, you can talk to HR. You should do the same with any contracts you signed with the employer. In the event that the company is violating your contract, you could benefit significantly.

Find a New Job

Quitting your job should be a last resort. However, it may be the best option for you. There’s an employer out there who will value you for your worth, and you deserve that.

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