Kevin O'Leary is not on board with quiet quitting.
The term, which has become popular on TikTok and in media since late July, essentially means setting boundaries in your workplace and not taking on more work than necessary. One in 10 employees say they are currently putting in less effort than they did six months ago, according to an August 2022 ResumeBuilder.com survey of 1,000 working Americans.
But, "quiet quitting is a really bad idea," says O'Leary, an investor and star of ABC's "Shark Tank." And that's true for multiple reasons, he says.
First: Employers value hungry, keen workers. "People that go beyond to try to solve problems for the organization, their teams, their managers, their bosses, those are the ones that succeed in life," O'Leary says.
O'Leary himself says he looks to hire people who are willing to put in "25 hours a day, eight days a week." If you're shutting off your laptop at 5 p.m. and going home, "you're not working for me," he says.
Second: O'Leary says you need a strong financial base to afford choosing how you want to structure your life and days. Limiting the hours you work per day, he says, is not conducive to the kind of success that brings that freedom — especially early in life.
"There's no question about it, personal happiness is something that is a balance between work and life," O'Leary says, adding: "It has nothing to do with nine-to-five. There is no balance in the pursuit of personal freedom. It is all out, pedal to the metal."
Proponents of quiet quitting, of course, disagree. For them, taking the foot off the pedal to ensure they work, say, 40 hours a week instead of 60, means spending more time with people they love and doing activities they love.
Maggie Perkins, a former teacher who's posted about quiet quitting on TikTok, says it's about spending time with her kids: "They're never going to be 3 and 4 years old again." Instead of grading papers, "I'm out playing in the sprinkler with them," she says.
O'Leary says that kind of approach doesn't maximize the dividends you could more fully enjoy later in life. "It's a sacrifice," he says. "But is it worth it? Oh, yes."