Topical Press ReleasesSeptember 15, 2023

Loud labourers add pressure

Loud labourers add pressure to an already challenging HCM environment

A new workplace trend has emerged, called loud labourers, which will only add pressure to the lives of already stressed business managers.

This is according to CRS Technologies, a leading proudly South African provider of human capital management as well as human resource services and solutions.

In keeping with its mandate to help businesses manage numerous labour-related challenges, from legislation to post-COVID-19 trends such as quiet quitters, CRS Technologies is drawing attention to loud labourers – a term used to describe workers who ‘talk the talk, but barely walk the walk’.

“In other words, these employees seem to excel at describing how hard they work, what they do and how they do it, but in reality their contribution is minimal at best. They are really effective when it comes to self-promotion, advertising their attributes and skills, but it quickly emerges that these people cannot back up their statements with concrete proof of what they claim to have accomplished,” says Nicol Myburgh, Head: CRS Technologies HCM Business Unit.

While trends like quiet quitters, boomerang employees and Sunday Scaries have demanded attention from decision-makers, Myburgh believes this latest labour issue has the potential to create a toxic workplace environment.

“As Cnbc.com writes, the term was coined by André Spicer, an organisational behavioural professor and Dean of Bayes business school. Research shows that loud labourers are tech-savvy and don’t have any qualms about utilising digital channels – primarily social media – to advertise how much they do,” Myburgh continues.

He says these people stand out because of their willingness to publicise how much they do, seeking recognition from colleagues and management.

However, they can become confrontational or belligerent when pressed to provide proof of the actual work they have done.

As Myburgh explains, it’s no longer about simply agreeing on KPIs, performance appraisals or results.  Now self-promotion and extrusive public behaviour to draw attention to what is done, where, why and how has crept into the employee-employer relationship.

CRS Technologies says the crux of the problem for businesses is that while certainly irritating and off-putting for those around them, loud labourers – through their self-centred actions – actually impact the culture of an organisation.

“Aside from it being annoying, loud labourers can deplete energy and lower the morale of workers. We also prescribe to the notion that loud labourers actually help create an environment in which talk outranks action, where marketing and visibility are considered more important than actual hard work. If unchecked, this can be devastating to any business,” he says.

Quiet quitters’ noisier relative

Myburgh says that it is interesting to note how international human resource management and labour-centric websites describe loud labourers as the noisier ‘cousin’ of quiet quitters.

CRS Technologies has remained vigilant on behalf of businesses as to the development of the quiet quitting trend and level of impact it has had – and continues to have on South African trade and industry.

The company lists several key points for managers to consider: –

  • Keep increases in workload short-term;
  • Compensate your team;
  • Make stepping up optional;
  • Be upfront about role growth;
  • Utilise employee recognition strategies;
  • Build rapport and relationships

Myburgh says that while these pointers are listed to assist companies in dealing with quiet quitters, there is every reason to believe a similar approach with more or less the same type of considerations can go a long way towards helping to silence loud labourers.

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