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EpisodesGuest InterviewSeason 3

Setting Boundaries at Work: Why “Quiet Quitting” Isn’t the Answer

Episode 26 | June 20, 2023

Setting Boundaries at Work: Why "Quiet Quitting" Isn't the Answer

Sara Ismail-Beigi Bartlett, joins us to break down current workplace boundary setting & the importance of prioritizing yourself.


Welcome to “That’s a Hard No”the podcast about learning to say no and set boundaries to live our best lives. 

Follow along with me as we learn from fellow strugglers and experts, so that you too can start saying no without feeling fear, guilt, or FOMO. 



Sara Ismail-Beigi Bartlett, Founder and Principal Consultant of MOD Network LLC. and host of the Can I offer you some feedback?’ podcast is a consultant and coach who specializes in managing organizational change and leadership development. She joins us to discuss quiet quitting and the best ways to handle boundary setting within the workplace.

Pearls on a String: Stutz, a Netflix documentary starring Jonah Hill and his therapist, is an inside look on the relationship between a therapist and their patient as well as Stutz’s particularly unique approach to therapy. He points out that everyday tasks can be looked at as Pearls on String, every task completed is just adding to the string. Sometimes we won’t do them well, or they will be difficult, and those can be the turds, they are black but they are still pearls added to our strings.

Key Takeaways

What is Quiet Quitting? This is the conscious decision to do the bare minimum to get by or not showing up for your position the way you used to.

  • Insights from the Inside: A View of All Levels of the Organization
    • Senior leaders are expressing concern about a lack of loyalty or quality of the current workforce.
    • This has created a conversation around what is actually expected of an employee, what do agreements truly consist of and what does leadership owe employee and vice versa.
    • Unfortunately, during Covid shutdowns employers were facing very difficult decisions and employees felt the fallout of their position as an asset/budget line rather than a person/team member.
    • The natural progression of a job is that the scope expands but there are generally not compensation or recognition increasing.
      • This is where the push back seems to begin.
  • Communication Breakdown
    • Is this internal dialogue?
      • It’s important for someone who feels their position has expanded to ask for compensation or express their frustrations rather than passive aggressively limiting their effort in their job.
      • Understandably, the damage may have already been done
    • Perception problems – without discussing these concerns, quiet quitting will most definitely be viewed as laziness or uninvested.
    • Leadership should create a safe culture for discussions and should be initiating conversations about the importance of their employees.

I think that most of the time most people like knowing what they can do better as long as it’s structured in a positive, in a constructive, in an actually meaningful way. For me to like actually do better. Most people are open to that feedback.

  • Humanizing
    • Feedback – High performers receive: great, great, do more! and average performers receive: nothing.
    • Remember that leadership and employees are human, treat them as such.
      • Prioritize meeting with team members and having personal, human conversations.
  • How To Have Set Boundaries
    • Open up for feedback, have an initial conversation about receiving it, how to ask for it, and how frequently it can it be expected.
Where to Find Sara
Read Full Transcript Here
Credits and Thanks
  • Many thanks to our friends and families (our “villagers”) for listening, and for your continued support.
  • That’s a Hard No is a production of Clever Girl Marketing
  • Marketing and Production Coordinator, Maura Del Rosario
  • Production Support, Evergreen Podcasts, Noah Foutz, Producer
  • New Rock Anthem Music: Written by Noah, and performed by his band, The Big Leagues
  • Videographer & Photographer, Jake Donnelly