News Karnataka
Sunday, November 27 2022
Brian's Subtle Humour

When you Quietly Quit, You Can Quietly Sit in the Moonlight!

Moonlighting and Quietly Quitting
Photo Credit : Unsplash

Don’t Quietly Quit on me. I have not done that to you yet. Because I am engaged, with you, not to you! I still want to bring a smile to your face, but it is getting increasingly difficult as attention spans drop, tension spans increase, and plans do not pan out as they did. But rest assured, I haven’t quit, even quietly quit trying to produce a weak smile, sorry, a weekly smile on your face. Oh, has that produced one? A weak one? Well, this is week four of the month, so naturally!

But quiet quitting is quite the rage among employees and employers (unalike though) these days, as the nights get longer and more conducive for moonlighting! Even the Russian soldiers in Ukraine are indulging in it – resting for the Ukrainians at night, while the Russians figure out what to do. They are as confused as are HR Managers everywhere! In some European Countries, it is called daylight Saving hours!

But they think they do. They have resorted to quiet hiring at home or trying to, starting with those they kept in reserve, but can’t find today. Because they couldn’t preserve it! And those in the reserve, feel they don’t deserve what is on offer – death! So, they searched google for a googly – how to break an arm!

Many have already quietly quit in many sectors of the World Economy, and the HR Profession is as non-plussed as before – they were never very good at Math anyway. They know not what to do, not that they know otherwise! Some of them have quietly quit themselves! They generally go with the flow (Flow is generally from Top to Bottom unless a pump is attached!) or deal a telling blow. Like when kids are growing up, and parents are confronted by their apathy or antipathy. But it does not solve the problem of Engagement (Sometimes not even marriage does, it only makes it worse!) which is the main reason for quietly quitting! It happens outside work too and in marriage too!

But what is this Quietly Quitting? Doesn’t make any sense! Quietly spitting I understand, we are pros at it, but this is new!

According to Wikipedia, Quiet quitting is an application of work-to-rule within the originally defined work hours, and upto the original expectations of the employer, by an employee, not the employer. It’s not really against the employer; it’s the employee’s way of providing for work-life balance for himself, so essential to avoid burning out according to life coaches.

But the Employer tends to view practitioners of this method of Work-Life Balance as work roaches! They are more interested in the Employee’s journey into the beyond! (not that beyond my friend, but that day too will come) – beyond the original job description, workday, and expectations! These are fences that the employee is expected to climb over and keep running! But Bud’s getting wiser.

He quietly quits. No fuss, no noise. Nothing exceptional, nothing unexceptional. He stays but quits the job. He does it, yet he doesn’t do it. Wikipedia calls it “acting your wage! doing precisely what the job requires.” Nothing more, nothing less. Follow the rules by the alphabet, not in their spirit – because the spirit has left the body by that time! This is why it is called Quiet quitting. He does it silently. Like in the classroom when the teacher is teaching, and you are already at the beach! And even an exam written from the beach gets you above the red line! easily!

But Quiet Quitting is nothing new! It was always around. Employers called them slackers; Employees called themselves packers! Pack it up before it overflows! In the past, they would have been loudly fired as an example, but today they are quietly fired – They are put in a corner, their wages reduced, and allowed to read columns like this one, because they are not given any real responsible work. And once they finish reading, they have to take a call to either Quietly quit or loudly quit! The former is more popular than the latter, putting the Management in a quandary about whether they have to do the laundry or not and how! But as Ben Granger, chief workplace psychologist at survey firm Qualtrics said, “Leaders at large and well-known companies in finance, tech and health care are very concerned. A lot of leaders in major organizations would rarely bring this up to us within as short of a time as this has been talked about in the media,” he said. “I don’t see that a lot.”

To quote the article at NDTV.com, “Especially scary for leaders is the “invisible” nature of the trend, according to Granger. In a remote or hybrid environment, the classic signs that an employee is checked out, like tardiness and absenteeism, can be harder to spot. While their first reaction is often to blame quiet quitting on laziness, Granger said many come to realize that it’s a management problem. There’s even an artificial intelligence startup that claims to offer a solution, analysing emails and Slack messages to detect engagement, burnout, and turnover risk among employees”. Tech tracking techies!

So, you stick with them, and they stick with you, if not by you? Ah, that’s a tough call to make, even in these 5G times. Lots of Connectivity issues. But once you quietly quit, and you find that there is a worklife imbalance (as distinct from work-life balance), you tend to look upwards at the moon and holler, “I need to engage myself, to make ends meet!” for if nothing goes in at one end, nothing comes out at the other end! And I work better in the moonlight than in the sunlight! I’m more engaged – and given my double income, can get married sooner rather than later! – more productive and I go well into the beyond into the moonlight! Indeed, the final, critical landing phase of the Apollo 11 mission began at 20:05 GMT on 20 July 1969. Just under 13 minutes later, at 20:17 GMT, the Eagle lunar module landed on the Moon. In the Moonlight!

And then came the news, Wipro has sacked around 300 employees for ‘moonlighting’ as the IT services firm toughened its stand against staffers taking a second job after work hours – in the moonlight!

Well, most domestic workers do that. They work in multiple homes to make up a single day’s wage. Security Guards do it. Doctors do it – practising their craft in the evenings if not at night, privately. Nurses and Physiotherapists do it. Teachers even – at tutorials, teach the same thing to the same kids they taught them in school, but more engagingly, personal attention, and all. Even parents do it. Work at their day job away from home but do all the homework after sunset! And so do I, when I have to go well beyond time to finish what I started, including this column! But it’s all done in the open and permission is granted (or demanded) as a retention strategy – The employer gets at least a part of them if not all! Which part is a hoot question! but it’s considered a win-win situation for everyone when it’s in the daylight. That’s called sunlighting!

But in the moonlight, well that’s a shady business or so they say. From a new moon, it soon becomes a full moon, and the employee may (may not) go crazy! Employers though, surely will! There is no law against it, but there is a flaw, more than one in fact. Trade secrets, Tech secrets, Competitive edge, Loyalty when there is something extra to offer, Tax, PF, Welfare benefits, the strain on the brain, couching, vouching, and of course slouching – everything is at stake. So, companies are spending more on stakeouts than on takeouts! Trust has rusted and as a consequence, employees have been rusticated!

Wipro’s chairman Rishad Premji said the company has no place for any employee who chooses to work directly with rivals while being on Wipro’s payroll. Wipro is not the only company that has raised concerns against ‘moonlighting’, a few days ago, even IBM warned against the latest trend. Moonlighting is a “complete violation of integrity in its deepest form,” he said. “The reality is that there are people today working for Wipro and working directly for one of our competitors and we have discovered 300 people in the last few months who are doing exactly that,” Premji said. Later when quizzed about action taken against the 300 employees, he said services have been terminated in those specific instances of violation.

Meanwhile, Tech Mahindra CEO CP Gurnani said he could be open to the practice if it helps employees make extra money. “If you look at the definition of moonlighting, it is having a second job secretively I’m all about transparency. As a part of transparency, individuals in organisations can have very candid conversations,” Premji said at an event, reiterating that current employees working for rival firms are a “complete violation of integrity in its deepest form”.

Mohandas Pai also disagrees with Premji on the issue. The former director of Infosys does not consider moonlighting “cheating.” “Employment is a contract between an employer who pays me for working for them for ‘n’ number of hours a day. Now what I do after that time is my freedom, I can do what I want,” Business Today quoted him as saying. Surely!

It does appear from the agreements and disagreements in the daylight about moonlight, that Quiet Quitting and Moonlighting go hand in hand (The clock’s hands that is!) And this is not second-hand!

This column must be up and published before EOD, or else I’ll be moonlighting in an LED! So, until next week…keep your light burning bright!

Disclaimer

This Article is written in a lighter vein. It hopes to bring a smile to your face, and you must not ascribe motives to its contents. There is no connection to events and characters in real life and if perchance you find a connect with any such real-life event or character, rest assured it’s purely coincidental.

Photo by Johnny Cohen on Unsplash /  Photo by Ganapathy Kumar on Unsplash

Share this:
Brian Fernandes

Brian is an alumnus of Roshni Nilaya’s Post Graduate School of Social Work, HR Department and has 30 years of local and international HR and General Management experience. Journalism, poetry, and feature writing is a passion which he is now able to pursue at will. Additionally, he loves compering and hosting talk shows. He loves learning and imparting it; so, when time permits, he provides leadership facilitation and soft skills training to Postgraduate students and Corporates in Mangaluru and Bengaluru. Besides, he is an accomplished Toastmaster under the aegis of Toastamasters.org and a designated Distinguished Toast Master.

Read More Articles
MANY DROPS MAKE AN OCEAN
Support NewsKarnataka's quality independent journalism with a small contribution.

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 2

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Visit 7Jackpots and find the best online casinos in India! Play the most popular casino games for real money!

Find the best odds at 10Cric and ipl betting 2021! Signup today and get up to a 100% deposit bonus.

To get the latest news on WhatsApp