Quiet Quitting in the Furniture Industry

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How To Turn Your Quiet Quitters Into Actively Engaged Team Members

If you are in the retail Furniture Industry, it’s likely that your year-over-year sales are off by at least 10% to 15%, if not 20% or more.

WHY? THERE ARE A MULTITUDE OF REASONS- Inflation, high interest rates, decreasing consumer confidence, the aftermath of the post-pandemic surge, tough economy, etc. Yet, one of the most silent but deadly reasons is “quiet quitting,” disengaged employees. Gallup’s State of the Global Workforce 2023 Report indicates that “Quiet Quitters Make Up At Least 50% of the U.S. Workforce – Probably More.

THE HEADLINES ARE LOADED WITH OMINOUS WARNINGS

The Year in Quiet Quitting– A new generation discovers that it’s hard to balance work with a well-lived life.” (The New Yorker – By Cal Newport)

When Quiet Quitting Is Worse Than the Real Thing (The Harvard Business Review – By Anthony C. Klotz and Mark C. Bolino)

First It Was Quiet Quitting, Now Workers Are Facing Off With Their Bosses – Employee frustrations impact productivity and worker retention, Gallup says (The Wall Street Journal – By Lindsay Ellis)

Quiet Quitting Is A Sign Of A Deeper Problem – Here’s what it means(Forbes – By Meeta Vangapally)

The Rise of Quiet Quitters In The Workplace (Home News Now –By Ray Allegrezza)

What is “Quiet Quitting”?

When an employee engages in quiet quitting, they stop going above and beyond for their employer and simply do the bare minimum to maintain their employment and fly below the radar. Quiet quitting is, by definition, a subtle and almost invisible phenomenon. This means it can be difficult to measure and quantify the degree to which it’s happening in your workplace.

In practice, this might mean:

  • Not volunteering for extra work, leadership roles, or responsibilities
  • Decreased customer and coworker engagement
  • Stagnant or declining KPIs and performance metrics
  • Not speaking up in meetings unless addressed directly
  • Not responding to emails or messages outside of work hours
  • Not going the extra mile beyond their job description
  • Becoming isolated from the rest of the team and avoiding social events
  • Taking a more-than-usual number of sick days (absenteeism)
  • An overall decline in engagement

Gallup’s “State of the Global Workplace 2023 report (©2023 Gallup, Inc. All rights reserved)

  • The majority of the world’s employees are quiet quitting (59%)
  • Over half of the USA employees are quiet quitting (52%)
  • Gallup estimates that low engagement costs the global economy $8.8 trillion and accounts for 9% of global GDP
  • Link: Gallup State of the Global Workplace 2023

Quiet Quitting USA & Canada

31% are Thriving At Work (Engaged)

These employees find the work meaningful and are connected to the team and their organization. They feel proud of the work they do and take ownership of their performance, going the extra mile for teammates and customers.

52% are Quiet Quitting (Not engaged)

These employees are filling a seat and watching the clock. They put in the minimum effort required and are psychologically disconnected from their employer. Although minimally productive, they are more likely to be stressed and burnt out than engaged workers because they feel lost and disconnected from their workplace.

17% are Lout Quitting (Actively disengaged)

These employees take actions that directly harm the organization, undercutting its goals and opposing its leaders. At some point along the way, trust between the employee and employer was severely broken. Or the employee has been woefully mismatched to a role, causing constant crises.

DAILY NEGATIVE EMOTIONS:

  • Stress (Experience the feeling of “stress” a lot of the day): 53%
  • Anger (Experience the feeling of “anger” a lot of the day): 20%

JOB MARKET:

  • Job Climate (Good time to find a job): 57%
  • Intent to Leave (watching for or actively seeking a new job): 47%

 The Opportunity

Regardless of the leadership quality, every company is subject to the negative impact of quiet quitting.  While your business may be performing better than the national averages, quiet quitting is a reality that is prevalent and inherent to a significant degree within every organization and is likely costing your organization significant revenue and profit and creating a drain on your team.

OTHER FACTS

  • 70% of the team engagement is attributed to their manager, yet many of the managers are quiet quitting, too. They are waiting for more inspiration and tools to build great teams.
  • Disengaged employees create disengaged customers.
  • Engagement permeates in all directions:
    • Actively engaged employees inspire and influence the team and your customers (they need to be recognized, rewarded, and further inspired).
    • Not engaged employees (quiet quitters) are the largest percentage of the workforce, the hardest to recognize, yet the easiest to coach (they’re waiting!).
    • Actively disengaged employees are damaging and a massive drain to the organization (they typically are not salvageable and generally need to move on).
  • Low engagement is related to higher stress for individuals and organizations and, of course, a major blow to a company’s bottom line.
  • When employees are engaged at work, they report significantly lower stress in their family lives as well.
  • When your employees’ well-being is thriving, your organization directly benefits – they take fewer sick days, deliver higher performance, and lower burnout and turnover rates.
  • While there are numerous aspects to addressing declining sales and profits, quiet quitting employees are your organization’s low[1]hanging fruit for significant and quick productivity gains.
  • They are ready to be inspired and motivated – if they are coached in the right way!

The 3 – Step Plan

  1. ASSESS & ANALYZE

Assess the extent of quiet-quitting in your organization and the impact it is having on your sales and bottom line.

a. Review current internal sales metrics (YOY sales, margin, close ratio, average ticket, bedding add-on, protection inclusion, etc.) on a companywide, location-by-location, and individual associate basis.

b. Analyze current industry and market trends that are relevant and impactful.

c. Include comprehensive location-by[1]location site visits to observe, interview, and get feedback from store leaders and sales associates.

  1. ENHANCE & IMPLEMENT

Enhance existing systems and implement new programs.

a. Enhance existing systems, programs, and policies to inspire, support, and engage the team.

b. Provide new inspirational training, coaching, and workshops custom-tailored to turn your quiet quitters into actively engaged team members.

c. Implement new programs, policies, and practices to offset disengagement and negative market conditions.

  1. SUPPORT & MAINTAIN

Ensure sustainability by creating ongoing internal support programs and monitoring.

a. Provide hands-on oversight as well as tools, metrics, and support to underpin the new company initiatives.

b. Include regular group zooms, weekly site visits, and one-on-one reviews and mentoring to ensure desired results.

c. Celebrate successes with recognition, awards, and perks for store locations and individual team members, as well as company-wide awards and recognition days.

THE BENEFIT – SUCCESS

While quiet quitters can be a massive drain to your organization, they are also the lowest-hanging fruit and your greatest opportunity for immediate growth and positive change. Studies show that quiet quitters are waiting for their leaders to connect with them, encourage them, and inspire them. With all the other challenges facing our industry today, don’t let this easily attainable goal to increase employee engagement and increase your sales and profit slip away. Equip your team leaders with new tools to turn quiet quitters into productive team members and become better mentors to those they lead. If your team members are not thriving at work, they are unlikely to thrive at home. If you take good care of your people, your people will take good care of your customers. You have the opportunity and privilege to help your employees thrive in their jobs and family life while making your organization strong and the world a better place.

Mark’s signature Quiet Quitting Coaching Program will help you turn quiet quitters into actively engaged team members!  Contact Mark Bannon at (860) 305-1788 or mark@markabannon.com.

Mark A. Bannon

As a furniture industry sales executive and team-builder, certified business coach, certified life coach, and mentor with over 35 years of entrepreneurial expertise and handson experience, Mark understands the challenges facing our industry today. He will coach, mentor, and teach your leadership and management how to turn quiet quitters into more actively engaged and productive team members, and can provide ongoing support to ensure sustainability.

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