Bounce Back from Burnout: Detection, Prevention and Replenishment
I once read a magazine article that said, “If you arrive to work and have to take more than three deep breaths before going inside, then you should quit your job even if you don’t have another lined up.”
But let’s be real - I bet plenty of us have taken those deep breaths, and I bet plenty of us haven’t quit. For me, it’s determination to not give up, and most importantly, I know that the feeling of burnout is only temporary -- that is -- if I have the support of my company to address burnout and help me recover.
Burnout is an organizational issue rather than a personal one. Organizations should support employees in preventing burnout, have measures in place to help predict and spot burnout, and act quickly to help burned out employees recover. They should know that employee engagement is about much more than common perks and incentives, and that leaders are the builders of a burnout strategy, according to the Harvard Business Review (HBR).
The World Health Organization has deemed burnout a global “occupational phenomenon” for which employees can seek help from health services. However, “Although the WHO is now working on guidelines to help organizations with prevention strategies, most still have no idea what to do about burnout,” reports HBR.
The solution? Give leaders the right knowledge, tools and strategies to prevent burnout.
The top five reasons for burnout, according to Christina Maslach, social psychologist and professor emerita of psychology at the University of California, Berkley (as told to HBR), are:
1. Unfair treatment at work
2. Unmanageable workload
3. Lack of role clarity
4. Lack of communication and manager support
5. Unreasonable time pressure
“The list above clearly demonstrates that the root causes of burnout do not really lie with the individual and that they can be averted - if only leadership started their prevention strategies much further upstream,” Maslach told HBR.
She said leaders must understand what motivates their employees. It’s about encouraging employees through challenging (but realistic) work, giving authentic recognition, allowing employee ownership, assigning meaningful work and involving employees in big decisions. Equally, leaders must offer and maintain competitive salaries, exceptional work conditions, strong working relationships and job security.
“We should never suggest that if they’d just practiced more grit or joined another yoga class or taken a mindfulness course, their burnout would have been avoided,” Maslach said.
Burnout is absolutely preventable, and we’re learning more and more about early detection and steps leaders should take to keep their people happy, healthy and giving every day 100 percent.
Hear a real-life, can’t-miss burnout story, and gain tools to tackle burnout prevention and strategies for burnout recovery by watching this on-demand webcast, sponsored by Limeade: “Spotting and Addressing Employee Burnout.” The webcast is complimentary, and can be downloaded at your convenience.
To learn more about elevating the employee experience with the Limeade ONE platform, click here.