The rise of bare minimum Mondays (and what to do about them)
Searches for ‘Bare Minimum Mondays’ have spiked by 190% in the last week, suggesting that the viral trend in America has hit the UK.
Following the Covid-19 pandemic, workers have begun prioritising their health and well-being over their jobs. This has led to new industry trends, such as ‘quiet quitting’ and the Great Resignation. Now, the latest trend is ‘Bare Minimum Mondays’.
We caught up with Mike McCloy, the Senior Account Manager at Maximillion, with 20+ years of experience in events. He currently specialises in sales and operations but benefits from a background in financial services for his take.
What Are ‘Bare Minimum Mondays’?
Bare Minimum Monday is a trend closely related to ‘quiet quitting’ wherein workers do the ‘bare minimum’ at the start of the week. A key reason for this is easing yourself back into the workweek and keeping your first day back very ‘light’ in terms of responsibilities, often due to a lack of motivation.
The trend is primarily used to avoid burnout. Commenters on TikTok videos have claimed ‘I’ve done the same and it made such a difference!” and “Yes!!!! I did this today (a Monday) and it felt incredible”, suggesting that the trend is here to stay.
The story behind Bare Minimum Monday #selfemployed #burnoutrecovery #selfemployedlife #worklifewellbeing #bareminimummondays #bareminimummonday
However, there are many in opposition to the practice, with Twitter user @slightlydanny stating “Quiet quitting and now bare-minimum Monday. Super cool “trends” that are doing wonders for small businesses who already struggle to find good workers. Why don’t we just pay off all their student loans too? Zero accountability. Zero integrity.
So, what can employers do to combat this trend and support their workers to prevent burnout? Mike McCloy is the Senior Account Manager at Maximillion, a corporate event management agency based in Edinburgh. He has provided the following tips for your readership:
7 Ways Employers Can Combat ‘Bare Minimum Mondays’
1. Offer Flexibility
“There are several outstanding benefits to a flexible work schedule, such as reducing absence and allowing employees to balance family, work and self-care. Research has indicated that offering flexible work can not only improve the job satisfaction and performance of your employees but also lower burnout.”
2. Encourage Discussion
“Employees want to work in an environment in which they feel heard, empowered and encouraged. Creating a safe space in which your employee feels comfortable coming to you with their concerns or problems is paramount, and can actually lead to higher retention and performance.”
3. Provide Support
“The first step is listening to your team, but the most essential step is implementing adequate support. Offering resources that can aid stress management, such as counselling or other mental health services is a good place to start. Alternatively, you should encourage your staff to take time off, if needed.”
4. Compensate Properly
“Employees want to feel as if their hard work is recognised. Failure to do so can lead to burnout, as individuals can start to feel unmotivated, which is one of the key causes of workplace burnout. If your staff are working long hours with a heavy workload, make sure to regularly remind them that their work is appreciated and valued.”
5. Prioritise Work-Life Balance
“A recent study by Monster revealed that an incredible 69% of employees working from home are experiencing symptoms of burnout. This sharp rise is driven by individuals feeling unable to ‘switch off’, loneliness and failure to adequately structure their working day.
If your staff work remotely, you should regularly offer and remind them to take breaks, teach attention management skills and restrict employee hours to ensure no one works late or burns themselves out.”
6. Monitor Staff
“There are several metrics you should monitor to assess if employees are experiencing burnout. These include monitoring attendance, keeping an eye on productivity and, most importantly, looking out for any changes in mood or personality.
High-performing employees are more prone to burnout, often due to too much work and stress. You should learn employee burnout signs such as exhaustion, forgetfulness and irritability and consider reaching out to the team member to address the issues ASAP.”
7. Regular Feedback
“By providing regular and constructive feedback, you can improve the confidence and performance of your employees. A team member that is unsure of their progress and any issues is more likely to become burnt out or leave the business, leading to monetary losses.
With a HubSpot survey revealing that 69% of employees say they would work harder if their efforts were recognised, try to schedule regular ‘check-ins’ or appraisals to discuss your employees work. Doing so means you can open a space for discussion, offer any solutions, provide support and feedback and most of all, take care of your staff to transform ‘Bare Minimum Mondays’ into ‘Maximum Mondays’.”