Like with many work phenomena, employee burnout ebbs and flows, but it never truly goes away.
According to the latest employee burnout statistics, these feelings of exhaustion and negativism are at an all-time high again. CNBC recently reported that over 40% of full-time desk-based workers polled across six countries said they are burned out.
Workplace burnout negatively impacts nearly every aspect of an organization. From employee morale and productivity to retention rates and safety. It’s more important than ever for businesses to understand the signs of burnout and put measures in place to prevent it.
What is Employee Burnout Anyway?
At this point, burnout can feel a bit like a buzzword. We’ve all heard about employees feeling overworked and undervalued, but it’s important to understand the nuances of this phenomenon.
According to the World Health Organization, “Burn-out is a syndrome conceptualized as resulting from chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed.” When employees are feeling burned out it’s not just your average stress. They may feel exhausted, mentally distanced from their job, and overall less productive.
Employee Burnout Signs
As such, the warning signs of employee burnout should not be confused with typical workplace jitters. The experts at Entrepreneur offer a handful of important employee burnout signs to be on the lookout for:
- Toxic workplace culture
- Exhausted employees
- Lack of motivation
- Low levels of concentration
- Decreased productivity
- Irritable employees
- Decrease in quality of work
- Increased number of sick days
There’s rarely any one cause behind employee burnout. Oftentimes, it’s a combination of various factors like excessive workload and long hours, lack of control or manager support, and unclear expectations that accumulate into these feelings of exhaustion and negativity.
How to Prevent Employee Burnout
Luckily, there are many ways managers can help prevent employee burnout. Here are five strategies to consider:
1. Promote Work-Life Balance
Having a healthy work-life balance improves productivity and retention while reducing sick days. Indeed recommends offering flexible work schedules and paid time off (and ensuring it’s respected) to get things started.
2. Prioritize Mental Health
Wellness extends far beyond physical health. Managers should always communicate the importance of mental health to their team and include access to mental health resources, stress management training, and counseling. Many companies are also including mental health days as part of their time off plans.
3. Set Clear Expectations
Many employees suffering from burnout feel lost at their job. Set clear, and more importantly, realistic expectations around work hours, duties, and more to prevent burnout.
4. Create an Inclusive Environment
Burnout can affect in-office and remote workers alike. However, the issues they face may be different. While in-office employees may struggle more with long hours at the office, remote workers may experience burnout due to a lack of manager guidance or unclear expectations around working hours. Ensure you’re creating an inclusive workplace culture where you can engage every employee no matter where they are.
5. Monitor Schedules and Workloads
Pay attention to the early warning signs of employee burnout. Utilize technology to effortlessly track schedules and workloads to ensure no one is working too much overtime or taking on the lion’s share of responsibilities.
Creating a positive work environment, encouraging employee engagement, and monitoring burnout can all help prevent burnout in employees. Learn more about how an easy-to-use employee engagement app makes it easier for your front-line to get the job done, all while engaging everyone on a whole new level with iTacit.