Employee Burnout – Why It Happens And How To Cure It Today

Business Management
Beirit Harvey October 19, 2021 9 min read

Employee burnout is a serious issue that can negatively impact your business and other employees. We describe why employee burnout occurs and how you can cure it and prevent it from happening in the future!

burnt out employee

Quick Guide

    If you’re reading this blog, then chances are, either you or your employees are struggling with feeling burnt out, overworked, overwhelmed, and stressed

    Employee burnout is a serious issue and can cause your employees major mental and physical health problems. Not only that, but it can have a major negative impact on your business and other colleagues as well. 

    In order to cure and prevent employee burnout, it’s critical for managers and company owners to understand exactly why employee burnout happens. Take a few deep breaths in and out… Guess what? We have a solution!

    Why Employee Burnout Happens

    Employee burnout happens for numerous reasons and it has a direct and negative impact on a company’s success. 

    A Gallup study found that employees are 63% more likely to take sick days and 23% more likely to have emergency room visits. 

    Additionally, it also results in less confidence and increase in employee turnover

    Gallup also noted 5 main causes of employee burnout, including 

    And if we break down those five main causes, we can draw a few conclusions.

    Unfair treatment at work occurs when employees feel that there is prejudice, favoritism, or issues with other coworkers; in which rules and policies don’t apply to them.

    An unmanageable workload can cause employees to feel a lack of work/life separation.

    When employees cannot easily and efficiently communicate with upper management it causes confusion, frustration, and a lower rate of employee productivity.

    If employees don’t feel they have support from their managers it makes it far more difficult for them to feel that their work environment is a healthy and happy one.

    Unreasonable due dates and goals create higher stress levels and a rush to complete work — quickly adding to employee burnout.

    In order to avoid and prevent employee burnout it’s essential that managers and business owners understand the symptoms and signs of employee burnout.

    The Symptoms & Signs Of Employee Burnout 

    The symptoms and signs of employee burnout can affect not only mental health but also physical health as well. Unless your managers have a keen eye, it could be difficult to spot. This is why understanding what the symptoms and signs of employee burnout are can help managers and business owners prevent employee burnout before it even happens. 

    The Mayo Clinic describes several signs and symptoms of employee burnout. 

    For example:  

    1. An increase in employee cynicism at work can be an obvious sign of employee burnout. 
    2. When employees feel that they have to force themselves to go to work, they have a hard time starting to work, staying focused, and staying productive
    3. Employees feel a lack of satisfaction from work achievements. 
    4. Employees may turn to drugs or alcohol to numb their feelings of dissatisfaction. 
    5. Poor or inconsistent sleep habits. 
    6. Physical issues such as stomach problems and headaches. 
    Employee burnout infographic

    While these symptoms and signs may be hard to spot, it’s necessary that managers and business owners handle these issues promptly before they take a toll on the employee, the business, and other colleagues.  

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    How To Cure Employee Burnout

    Now that you have a better idea of how to spot and understand the signs of employee burnout, now is the time to focus on how managers and employees themselves can help cure employee burnout. 

    There are several ways to cure employee burnout and employee stress in general. 

    Some of the ways you can cure employee burnout include:

    1. Make sure that managers know they MUST take action immediately if they sense an employee is burnt out or stressed. Have them invite the employee to meet one-on-one and discuss ways in which they can help improve their situation.
    2. Make the office space a welcoming and inviting place to work. Buy some plants for the office, make a lounge area where employees can sit, relax, socialize, and take a break from a stressful day.  
    3. Ensure managers take an interest in employees’ wellbeing. Create a wellbeing and employee health plan. Provide employee assistance programs, yoga classes, or even healthy snack and lunch options. 
    4. Ensure an open-door communication policy for employees and managers. By providing employees a safe and secure environment where they feel comfortable to speak to managers, you ensure a culture and environment where employees feel their voices are heard
    5. Plan a company fun day or a team building exercise for employees to socialize.

    While these are ways managers and business owners can cure employee burnout, there are also ways to prevent employee burnout before it even happens. 

    How To Prevent Employee Burnout

    Preventing employee burnout is much better than dealing with it after it’s already happened. 

    By preventing employee burnout you will reduce negative effects that employee burnout causes once it’s already happened. 

    For example, by dealing and preventing employee burnout, companies can reduce employee turnover, increase employee engagement, improve employee productivity, and increase overall wellbeing. 

    Specific ways managers and business owners can prevent employee burnout include: 

    1. Make sure all employee goals and KPIs are actually tangible and realistic. 
    2. Form a culture committee that can help recognize signs of burnout and create a plan to prevent and cure employee burnout. A culture committee can help take the stress off of managers who don’t have the time to manage and monitor employee burnout. 
    3. Collect employee feedback so managers have a better understanding of what improvements need to be made in order to boost employee morale and reduce stress. 
    4. Ensure you create an employee recognition program to recognize star employees and improve employee engagement, productivity, and morale!
    5. Provide employees with the proper tools and technology to help reduce employee burnout, increase employee engagement, increase productivity, and morale!

    Preventing employee burnout by making realistic goals and expectations for employees and not overloading them with work has a major impact on their wellbeing and happiness. 

    As mentioned above, a culture committee can create a solid plan for reducing employee burnout while simultaneously taking the pressure off of managers who need to focus on other, more pressing tasks. 

    Collecting employee feedback is one thing, but in order to make actionable changes, managers need to actually ACT on the feedback. So don’t make the mistake of merely collecting feedback, but make positive changes and improvements to your company for the sake of your employees. 

    Employees love to be recognized for their personal and professional achievements. Forbes notes, by “acknowledging employees and their individual contributions makes them feel like they can be the best version of themselves at work, and this contributes to reduced stress, absenteeism and attrition”. 

    Employee receiving feedback

    Also, you can leverage technology to help manage all of these ways in which to prevent employee burnout. 

    With the Connecteam employee management software, employees and managers can prevent employee burnout in the following ways:

    1. An in-app directory lets employees easily search and get in touch with colleagues in just a few clicks. 
    2. The in-app chat allows managers and employees to send targeted 1:1 messages or group messages to reach a whole team or department. 
    3. Daily tasks and checklists provide employees with clear and concise daily goals to ensure they don’t get overwhelmed with tasks they cannot complete. Managers are also provided complete oversight over what tasks are completed with automated notifications and alerts. 
    4. Managers and business owners can post updates, announcements, and company news on the app’s social feed to keep all employees in the loop and ensure open and clear communication
    5. Recognize star employees on the social feed and allow colleagues to like, comment, post GIFs, images, and videos to increase employee engagement and boost employee morale
    6. Collect employee feedback through a digital suggestion box, live polls, and surveys. 
    7. Digitally plan and distribute the employee schedule directly through the app so that employees have access to their schedule 24/7. Through collaborative scheduling, employees can claim open shifts, shift swap with employees (if you allow), and in-shift notes provide employees with clear instructions on what to do when they arrive for work. 
    8. You can even provide employees with external reading, links to articles, and other resources on how to avoid employee burnout through the digital knowledge center

    At the end of the day, employee management software, like Connecteam, can take the headache out of doing all these processes manually with pen and paper. 

    Not to mention, it provides employees with the tools and technology, directly in the palm of their hand, to reach out before employee burnout occurs. 

    The Bottom Line On Preventing Employee Burnout

    It’s pretty apparent to see that employee burnout can wreak havoc on any company. Being able to properly see the signs and symptoms of employee burnout and preventing it before it happens is the best way to deal with the issue. 

    Specific ways managers and business owners can prevent employee burnout include: 

    1. Make sure all employee goals and KPIs are actually tangible and realistic. 
    2. Form a culture committee that can help recognize signs of burnout and create a plan to prevent and cure employee burnout. A culture committee can help take the stress off of managers who don’t have the time to manage and monitor employee burnout. 
    3. Collect employee feedback so managers have a better understanding of what improvements need to be made in order to boost employee morale and reduce stress. 
    4. Ensure you create an employee recognition program to recognize star employees and improve employee engagement, productivity, and morale!
    5. Provide employees with the proper tools and technology to help reduce employee burnout, increase employee engagement, increase productivity, and morale!

    The quickest way to cure employee burnout is to make sure managers know how to spot it and take action to help the employee immediately, form a culture committee to help take the stress off of management and let them focus on the bottom line, create an employee wellness program and offer employees services to reduce stress, and ensure an open-door communication policy in the workplace so employees feel comfortable discussing their ideas or concerns. 

    Lastly, invest in an employee management software, like Connecteam, and provide your employees with the proper tools and technology to streamline daily operations, increase employee engagement, productivity, and watch morale reach new heights. 

    Streamline Daily Operations And Reduce Day-To-Day Friction With The Connecteam Employee Management Software!

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