Optometry Practice Owner Resources

Quiet Quitting

There was a recent article in the Wall Street Journal about “Quiet Quitting.” 

I have such mixed feelings about this!

On one hand, I fully support work-life balance.  The employees in our office are exactly that… employees, and shouldn’t be sacrificing their physical and mental health for our businesses (or anyone else’s for that matter!)  The people interviewed in the article made conscious decisions to compartmentalize work and not-work — and from some comments, seem like they’re doing so very successfully, measured by good feedback, positive performance reviews and promotions.  Good for them.  

Maybe there should be a better name for it — there’s a difference between total disengagement (which quiet quitting implies) and simple delineation of time for work and time for play.  “If your gen-Z coworkers are showing laser focus and concentrated productivity during work hours and enjoying life outside the office…” could have been a headline that grabbed attention in a different way.

The piece that’s concerning is the interpretation of healthy work-life balance as taking advantage of downtime at work or doing only the minimum that’s asked.  There’s a lot of room between “I’m not going to put my work email on my phone, and will answer inquiries during normal business hours” and “This patient canceled so I’m going to play Candy Crush until someone asks me to do something.”  Employees doing the bare minimum during working hours aren’t only robbing the practice of work time they’re paying for – but are robbing themselves of the great feelings that come from using their brain, solving problems, overcoming challenges etc.

The biggest worry I had when I read this was for associate optometrists who want to become practice owners.  There’s no “quiet quitting” in practice ownership.  Work-life balance, sure, but it takes a while to get there and a whole lot of work consuming your every waking (& some of your sleeping) moments for a while.  Entrepreneurs don’t mind, because they enjoy building something and although it’s work, it feels more like solving a puzzle, building something amazing, or enjoying a hobby, all of which they’re willing to do regardless of the hour of the day.  Some entrepreneurs are born – they were the kids with the lemonade stand every weekend, or going door to door offering acorn-clearing services or selling handmade jewelry.  But I know lots of other successful entrepreneurial docs (myself included!) who were surprised by their own enjoyment of the business side of practice.   

As an associate OD, had I been focused on doing the minimum required and leaving at 5 pm on the dot, I  never would have had the opportunities to see and understand the practice reports, participate in solving issues, hear the staff drama, and be part of the conversations that changed the direction of the business.  I never would have gained the knowledge that ultimately let me leave the situation I was in and venture out to open a practice on my own.  I would have missed out on a lot of knowledge, a lot of interesting conversation, and ultimately something that brings a lot of joy to my life.

I hope that the emphasis on healthy work-life balance stays, and hope that “quiet quitting” does not become something admired and strived for by the upcoming generation.

 

 

And if you have big dreams for your practice that have yet to be realized: Contact us for a free consultation.

There was a recent article in the Wall Street Journal about “Quiet Quitting.” 

I have such mixed feelings about this!

optometryOn one hand, I fully support work-life balance.  The employees in our office are exactly that… employees, and shouldn’t be sacrificing their physical and mental health for our businesses (or anyone else’s for that matter!)  The people interviewed in the article made conscious decisions to compartmentalize work and not-work — and from some comments, seem like they’re doing so very successfully, measured by good feedback, positive performance reviews and promotions.  Good for them.  

Maybe there should be a better name for it — there’s a difference between total disengagement (which quiet quitting implies) and simple delineation of time for work and time for play.  “If your gen-Z coworkers are showing laser focus and concentrated productivity during work hours and enjoying life outside the office…” could have been a headline that grabbed attention in a different way.

The piece that’s concerning is the interpretation of healthy work-life balance as taking advantage of downtime at work or doing only the minimum that’s asked.  There’s a lot of room between “I’m not going to put my work email on my phone, and will answer inquiries during normal business hours” and “This patient canceled so I’m going to play Candy Crush until someone asks me to do something.”  Employees doing the bare minimum during working hours aren’t only robbing the practice of work time they’re paying for – but are robbing themselves of the great feelings that come from using their brain, solving problems, overcoming challenges etc.

The biggest worry I had when I read this was for associate optometrists who want to become practice owners.  There’s no “quiet quitting” in practice ownership.  Work-life balance, sure, but it takes a while to get there and a whole lot of work consuming your every waking (& some of your sleeping) moments for a while.  Entrepreneurs don’t mind, because they enjoy building something and although it’s work, it feels more like solving a puzzle, building something amazing, or enjoying a hobby, all of which they’re willing to do regardless of the hour of the day.  Some entrepreneurs are born – they were the kids with the lemonade stand every weekend, or going door to door offering acorn-clearing services or selling handmade jewelry.  But I know lots of other successful entrepreneurial docs (myself included!) who were surprised by their own enjoyment of the business side of practice.  

As an associate OD, had I been focused on doing the minimum required and leaving at 5 pm on the dot, I  never would have had the opportunities to see and understand the practice reports, participate in solving issues, hear the staff drama, and be part of the conversations that changed the direction of the business.  I never would have gained the knowledge that ultimately let me leave the situation I was in and venture out to open a practice on my own.  I would have missed out on a lot of knowledge, a lot of interesting conversation, and ultimately something that brings a lot of joy to my life.

I hope that the emphasis on healthy work-life balance stays, and hope that “quiet quitting” does not become something admired and strived for by the upcoming generation.

 

And if you have big dreams for your practice that have yet to be realized: Contact us for a free consultation.