Nowadays, businesses are paying a lot of attention to ensuring their employees have a good experience. When employees feel good about their work, it helps with things like their mood, showing up for work, how much work they get done, and how long they stay on the job. But if employees get stressed because they have too much to do and don’t feel like anyone cares, they can get burnt out. This makes them not do well and want to leave their job. As an employer, it’s up to you to stop this from happening and to keep your employees in a happy group. This blog aims to provide you with ways to create a supportive workplace to prevent employee burnout. Let’s get started.
Understanding Employee Burnout
Employee burnout for employers is when individuals experience extreme physical or mental exhaustion due to high stress levels at their workplace or excessive working hours. This condition usually develops gradually, leading employees to feel a sense of helplessness, failure, detachment, and cynicism. As a result, their sense of accomplishment and job satisfaction diminishes.
The causes of employee burnout can be categorized as follows:
- Personality Factors: Individuals who exhibit traits such as over-achievement, perfectionism, and pessimism are more prone to experiencing burnout.
- Work-Life Imbalance: When work or personal life demands become overwhelming, it can negatively impact an employee’s performance, potentially leading to burnout.
- Work-Related Stress: Factors like an excessive workload, increased job demands without corresponding rewards, lack of recognition or constructive feedback, and loss of confidence in leadership can contribute significantly to burnout.
In essence, employee burnout is a consequence of the excessive stress and demands that work, individual traits, and the balance between work and personal life can collectively exert on an individual in a professional setting.
How to Create a Supportive Workplace to Prevent Burnout?
A study from Gallup found that 76% of people they asked said they had felt tired and stressed from work. Another research by Limeade found that 40% of workers left their jobs because they were feeling burned out. Employee burnout for employers doesn’t happen suddenly. It’s like a slow build-up. For some employees, the only way they think they can stop feeling this way is by quitting their job and leaving. To prevent this, organizations have to take some actions; let’s check them out.
- Open Communication: Foster an environment where employees feel comfortable sharing their concerns and feedback. Regular check-ins and open-door policies encourage them to voice their thoughts, helping you identify burnout signs early. Infosys, a company listed on ‘Top Companies to Work for,’ has established a listening post to get employee feedback.
- Manage Workload: Ensure that workloads are reasonable and manageable. Avoid overloading employees with excessive tasks, leading to stress and burnout.
- Set Clear Expectations: Provide clear guidelines and expectations for tasks and projects. Employees who know what’s expected of them are less likely to feel overwhelmed.
- Encourage Breaks: Promote the importance of taking breaks during the workday. Encourage short walks, brief moments of relaxation, and lunch breaks to help employees recharge.
- Flexible Scheduling: Offer flexible work arrangements, such as flextime or remote work options. Allowing employees to balance their work with personal needs can reduce stress and increase job satisfaction. Google India emphasizes flexibility, and you can see how desperately candidates want to work there.
- Promote Wellness: Create wellness programs that support physical and mental health. Consider offering resources like yoga classes, meditation sessions, or access to counseling services.
- Recognize and Reward: Acknowledge employees’ hard work and achievements. Regular recognition and rewards make employees feel valued, boosting their morale and reducing burnout risk.
- Encourage Time Off: Emphasize the importance of taking vacation days and using paid Time off. Create a culture that doesn’t discourage employees from using their entitled Time off.
- Skill Development: Provide opportunities for skill development and career growth. Employees who feel they’re learning and progressing are more likely to stay engaged and motivated. Axis Bank has implemented a notable HR initiative through its own mentoring program. This program involves senior managers, MDs, and the CEO mentoring at least nine individuals, mentioned in the Best Companies to Work For 2023 report by Taggd, a digital recruitment platform.
- Inclusive Environment: Foster inclusivity and diversity within the workplace. Employees feeling a sense of belonging can reduce stress and promote overall well-being.
- Empower Decision-Making: Involve employees in decision-making processes that affect their work. Empowerment gives them a sense of ownership and control, reducing feelings of burnout.
- Lead by Example: Demonstrate a healthy work-life balance and prioritize your well-being. When employees see leaders taking care of themselves, they’re likelier to do the same.
- Address Conflicts: Swiftly address conflicts and concerns within the workplace. Unresolved issues can contribute to stress and burnout.
- Clear Growth Paths: Provide clear pathways for career advancement. Employees who see a future within the company are motivated to stay engaged and avoid burnout. Highlighted in the “Best Companies to Work for 2023” report by Taggd, HDFC Bank, the second-largest bank in the country, emphasizes learning and development. They provide employees with learning tools and technologies to enhance their skills and industry knowledge, reflecting their dedication to fostering a capable and dynamic workforce.
- Promote Social Connections: Encourage social interactions among employees. A positive social network can reduce feelings of isolation and stress. Many companies have adopted this strategy to promote team building and reduce burnout.
Business can not merely run on employers; it needs the workforce to go to a great height. So, it becomes the employer’s duty to foster a positive environment. Adopting strategies to keep your workforce away from burnout & perform well has become paramount. This helps the company’s long-term profitability.