Have a 'Lazy Girl Job'? Don't Feel Guilty

In the 'NYT,' Jessica Grose advocates for 'reasonable boundaries' for workers
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 17, 2023 11:27 AM CDT
Have a 'Lazy Girl Job'? Don't Feel Guilty
Stock photo.   (Getty Images/Prostock-Studio)

Feel a twinge of guilt on the days you leave work right on time? Don't, says Jessica Grose, who takes a deep dive for the New York Times into what it means to be a "good" employee. Grose wants a more "positive spin" on two fairly new terms in particular: "quiet quitting" (where workers do the bare minimum to keep their jobs), and "lazy girl job," for which she cites a Wall Street Journal description: "The ideal lazy-girl job is one that can be done from home, comes with a chill boss, ends at 5pm sharp, and earns between $60,000 and $80,000 a year—enough to afford the basic comforts of young-adult life, yet not enough to feel compelled to work overtime." Grose takes issue with the negative connotations: "These concepts aren't about goofing off all day or shirking responsibility; they're about creating reasonable boundaries based on actual job descriptions."

Joan Williams of the Center for WorkLife Law agrees. "There is a distinction between not being available 24/7 and just putting in the minimum effort on your job. Those are different things," she says. Grose writes that choosing the former "shouldn't be framed as a moral failing," and that employers shouldn't freak out about workers putting down such boundaries. She cites as one example a pilot program in the UK that tested out a four-day workweek with no loss in productivity. It's about quality, not quantity, of work, writes Grose. "Not everyone should be a raging ambition monster; it is not sustainable for a varied and functional workplace." Read her essay in full here. (Read more workplace stories.)

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