‘Lazy Girl Jobs’ and why HR leaders should pay attention

TikTok trend puts spotlight on need for Gen Z to connect with rise of remote, hybrid work, says Stanford researcher

‘Lazy Girl Jobs’ and why HR leaders should pay attention

While it might seem like another Gen Z TikTok trend to laugh off, “Lazy Girl Jobs” is more than just another term for quiet quitting.

The trend identifies specific types of jobs that can allow a remote worker to cover their living costs while doing the least amount of work possible, with the aim of prioritizing personal fulfillment over career aspirations.

The “Lazy Girl” phenomena went viral recently as yet another iteration of “quiet quitting”, a term that’s become very familiar since the mass shift of work online and the Great Resignation post-pandemic.

As Gabrielle Judge, the originator of the “anti-hustle gig” explains, these jobs offer “decent” pay ($60,000 - $80,000 per year in her estimation), are generally nontechnical and mostly clerical in nature, and, most importantly, offer flexible, all-remote hours. She lists titles such as customer success managers and account managers as possible Lazy Girl Jobs.

‘Lazy Girl’ and remote or hybrid work

The “Lazy Girl” trend puts the spotlight on remote and hybrid work — an area known well by Dr. Pamela Hinds, a Stanford researcher and professor of Management Science & Engineering who for years has studied the effects of technology on teams, collaboration and innovation.

Most recently she’s been looking into what contributes to a sense of belonging for remote and hybrid tech workers.

“One of the things that I would be very concerned about as a leader in an organization right now is the extent to which people are identified with the organization,” she told HRD.

“And I think, historically, organised, strong organizations have had strong cultures, and people have really felt like they are part of that, it's something that they identify with. And with… the shift to remote work, it's a little bit harder to sustain that connection to the organization, that sense of belonging. So I think that's something that organizations can work directly on.”

Gen Z wants to connect at work

Research has shown that Gen Z is reacting to entering the workforce unprepared after coming of age during lockdowns and global unrest, and in fact, they want to be connected with their jobs; a 2023 survey released by Joblist revealed that Gen Z is disproportionately interested in in-person work, at 57% compared to the 44% average. 

“Pretty much all of the interviewees that have entered the workforce in the last two years are really craving more connection,” Hinds told HRD. “They say, ‘I don't have to go in every day, but I do because I just hope I run into people and have a chance to interact with them.’

“They're not building professional networks the way that they had hoped. They're not learning from their colleagues and elders the way that they’d hoped, they aren't getting a sense of ‘What is this organization about?’ because they're just sitting in front of a computer at home so much of the time.

“I think that slice of society is struggling with their transition into the work world.”

Also a challenge? Anxiety. Some experts blame overprotective “boomer” parents for raising a generation of employees who are afraid of anxiety and will do anything to avoid it, writes Stern School of Business educator Suzy Welch in the Wall Street Journal:

“They have been taught anxiety is a harmful emotion rather than a beneficial one that, once navigated successfully a few times, motivates us to reflect and change,” which is causing Gen Z to turn away from hard work — similar to the huge trend of quiet quitting.

Involve Gen Z in company’s purpose

The key to connecting with remote workers, especially socially-conscious Gen Z workers, is involving each of them in the higher purpose of the company, Hinds says. Draw a direct connection between the work they are doing, and what the company is contributing to the world.  

“As human beings, we tend to feel a greater sense of belonging and connection when we're engaging with other people, when there are signifiers of culture and something of which we are a part,” she says.

“At a larger level, what is the organization trying to accomplish? How can people derive a sense of meaning and purpose from that larger contribution the organization is making?”

When people are remote, it's harder to stay connected to that if they're just working on their very small piece of the job, Hinds says, “and not reminded of why this is important and what it contributes to and how it's meaningful. Leaders at all levels can communicate the broader vision: What it is the organization is trying to accomplish, and how it is the work that's being done fits into that.”

Recent articles & video

What's the key to Gen Z and millennial employees' job satisfaction?

Lego ties employee bonuses to annual emissions

Alphabet layoffs later this year to be 'much smaller in scale': reports

Elon Musk: Jobs to be optional in 'benign' AI future

Most Read Articles

Alphabet layoffs later this year to be 'much smaller in scale': reports

HR-related email subjects still tops for phishing attempts: report

Wage premiums for AI specialist jobs hitting 25% in 5 countries surveyed