Dealing with “silent abandonment” as a financial adviser


Andrew Caldwell, director of the human resources advisory line at Peninsula Canada, said professionals who are paid primarily for performance, either through commissions or bonuses, are likely at low risk of succumbing to silent shutdown, a- he declared.

“These people are motivated, and if they’re not making money, they’re still going to move on,” he said.

However, silent abandon can show up in support roles and salaried positions, and can be approached tactfully. If you see an employee not performing at their usual level, it’s worth having a conversation, he said.

Caldwell recommended preparing with facts, not just opinions. Dig into all the metrics you can to back up your perception. There are many reasons performance could decline, including problems in their personal lives or financial pressures at home, he said.

“If you can’t have this conversation, you won’t really understand why this person is going off the radar,” he said.

This conversation is a must, said Catalina Rodriguez, employment lawyer and workplace investigator at Forte Law in Vancouver.

“The employer has no right to be willfully blind to what is happening right in front of them,” she said. “If you see someone struggling now, you have to sit down with them and say, ‘What’s going on? How are you?’ And try to dig deeper – the conversation needs to be meaningful.

Someone quitting quietly could have a mental health issue, which is a disability and a protected ground under state and federal employment laws.

“Disabilities can be permanent or temporary,” Rodriguez said. If a worker is in difficulty, the employer has a duty to find out the reason before considering dismissal.

But having silent quitters — as opposed to low performers — on your team is no reason to panic, Caldwell said. Although it seems counterintuitive, having a team of high performers who go above and beyond has its downsides.

“Like, great. You manage yourself, that’s great,” he said. that next job, they’re looking for that next move.”

Caldwell is okay with a worker coming in, doing the job, and going home, because he’ll be back the next day to do the same thing.

“The quality is there, the work is there. Maybe they don’t go beyond that, but they don’t need to,” he said.

There are so many new terms with “quiet” ahead of them now — including the quiet shot, which involves micromanaging and trying to push underperformers out the door, Caldwell said. It all comes down to getting people back to life post-pandemic.

“It’s up to the managers to have a really good understanding of their team and adapt their style to the individual and be consistent with them,” Caldwell said. “I think quiet quitters aren’t necessarily a bad thing, but if your whole company is quiet quitters, there’s a problem. You’ll want to look at the management at that point.

A very bad employee

Establishing just cause to fire a quiet quitter and avoid paying severance pay is theoretically possible, but it’s a long road, Rodriguez said. “As an employer, you [have to prove] you have carefully managed this person’s performance for a significant period of time. »

This means setting clear expectations and giving the worker a realistic chance to improve. If not, provide plenty of warnings and documentation.

“Courts will only agree with an employer that they had just cause to fire someone because of their performance if the employer can show that they gave people a fair chance to meet the standards, that they clearly communicated those standards and that the failure to meet those standards was a lack of will,” she said.


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