Need-to-know terms for business leaders in 2023

TERMINOLOGY has been turbocharged by the pandemic: quiet constraint, desk-bombing, quiet quitting…

NerdWallet business finance expert Connor Campbell has compiled a list, with definitions and solutions to help business leaders navigate the workplace climate.


Similar to photo-bombing, this refers to colleagues showing up at your desk unexpectedly for a conversation that you weren’t prepared for. With remote working now common, lonely employees may be taking their eagerness to socialise a bit too far. While it may be meant in a positive way, there is the potential for desk-bombing to become an issue if it is used to air grievances.

Solution: Set aside part of the day for uninterrupted social time, particularly if employees are only in the workplace sporadically. This can be achieved through communal breaks.

Quiet quitting

This refers to employees reducing the amount of work they do outside of job parameters and pay-grades. Like a work-to-rule, where employees stick to the responsibilities in their job description.

Solution: Arrange regular check-ins and stay in regular contact with employees. Give them the opportunity to voice any concerns they may have, and set out their expectations. This helps to avoid a build-up of resentment.

Loud leaving

Boss leaving work, loud leaving illustration
Loud leaving: senior managers leaving the office on-time and encouraging employees to do the same

Potentially in response to quiet quitting, senior managers and business leaders have begun loud leaving: leaving the office on-time and encouraging employees to do the same to show there’s no obligation to work late.

This is a solution in itself, and has helped to create a healthier working environment and is to be encouraged.


Following the term “cuffing season”, which emerged to describe short-term winter relationships, job-cuffing refers to employees settling quickly into new roles during the winter months before searching for new opportunities in the spring.

With the UK entering a recession, being without a job isn’t a sensible option, and many will be willing to remain in a position they’re unhappy with for the time-being.

Figures suggest just 17 percent of Brits love their job, and 54 percent dislike aspects of it. These employees might be preparing to move on in the new year.

Quiet constraint

This is where employees withhold important information that could help colleagues to do their jobs better.

In a recent US Workplace Culture Report, 58 percent of employees admitted doing it. It could be linked to the rise of remote working, causing a disconnect between co-workers and making them feel less inclined to help one another.

Solution: Take time for employee introductions, and make new arrivals known as team members, rather than rivals.


With the UK entering a recession, there is an increased risk of redundancies. In response to this, many employees are thinking of a Plan B. This can be achieved by keeping networks warm on platforms such as LinkedIn, along with maintaining up-to-date CVs.

Redundancies were at a record-high at the height of the pandemic, with 330,000 people losing their jobs. Recent estimates suggest there will be 500,000 more redundancies soon.

Solution: Reassure staff where possible, and put support measures in place for those who may be made redundant. Ensure that your severance package is fair and consider providing access to mental health support.