Back in September, we delved into the issue of “quiet quitting” and discussed how employers can manage their quiet quitting employees. Recently, we’ve seen a new, flip-side, trend of employee’s “loud quitting”. No employer wants a disgruntled employee making a dramatic exit from their workplace and potentially spewing ill words about the workplace. So, here are some legal tactics for employers to mitigate potential damages to their company or reputation related to loud quitting employees.
What is Loud Quitting?
“Loud quitting” refers to an employee making a very public and disruptive departure from their job, often with the intent to call attention to perceived injustices or mismanagement at their workplace. This can take various forms, such as dramatic farewell emails, social media posts, public speeches, or even videos. While these methods may give an employee a sense of vindication or catharsis, they can potentially cause damage to a company’s reputation and morale among the remaining employees.
How Employers Can Manage Loud Quitting?
Mitigating the damages associated with loud quitting can be challenging but below are a few legal and professional strategies that employers should consider:
- Ensure your workplace has clear policies and procedures: Employers should have clear policies and procedures about acceptable behavior in the workplace, including policies around harassment, workplace etiquette, and most importantly, a process for discharge and discipline. These policies should be communicated clearly to all employees when they are hired and flagged again when significant amendments are made to any policies and procedures. We recommend all workplaces have an Employee Handbook that is acknowledged by employees when they are hired to ensure compliance.
- Establish a strong social media policy: With social media seemingly taking over the world, this is a key policy that is recommended to be included in your Employee Handbook. Employers should establish and communicate clear rules for employees about what they can and cannot post on social media about their workplace. While such policies must respect employees’ freedom of speech, they can prohibit malicious or false statements about the company.
- Consider Confidentiality and Non-disparagement Agreements: Employers can protect themselves by having employees sign agreements that prevent them from disclosing confidential information or making disparaging remarks about the company or its employees. It’s important to note that these agreements must be reasonable and we recommend working with a lawyer to ensure compliance with local legislations.
- Implement conflict resolution mechanisms: Employers should have mechanisms in place to resolve conflicts and address employee concerns on an ongoing basis. If employees are given the opportunity to address concerns as they arise, this could help prevent situations where an employee feels the need to resort to loud quitting.
- Open communication is key: Employers should foster an environment where employees feel comfortable voicing their concerns. If employees feel heard, they are less likely to resort to dramatic actions like loud quitting. Employers can also consider providing support services to employees, like counseling or career guidance, so dissatisfied employees have resources readily available to navigate issues more constructively.
What to do if an Employee Loud Quits?
If an employee loud quits, it’s important that employers maintain professionalism. If a loud quitting incident does occur, remaining professional and not engaging in public arguments with the departing employee can minimize damage to the company’s reputation.
It’s also important that employers keep documentation. Keeping well-documented records of all employee actions, conflicts, and decisions can help protect the company from any potential legal dispute following a loud quitting incident.
If you’ve experienced a loud quitting incident, or want legal advice on employee resignations or terminations, get in touch for a consultation.