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WFH - Transforming Burnout to Engagement

According to HRD's, "COVID-19: Why burnout is on the rise", in mid-Feb 2020, 61% of respondents said they were burning out on the job. However, with COVID-19, 73% are now feeling exhausted for the following reasons:

  • 26.7%: No separation between work and life

  • 20.5%: Unmanageable workload

  • 18.8%: Job security concerns

  • 11.1%: Lack of support from manager

  • 10.8%: Lack of control over work.

Gallup’s Perspective on Employee Burnout: Causes and Cures found that employees who say they are very often or always experience burnout at work are:

  • 63% more likely to take a sick day

  • 13% less confident in their performance

  • 1/2 as likely to discuss how to approach performance goals with their manager

With the increasing probability that WFH will become the new normal for many of us in the longer term, it is important to consider the root causes and approaches to mitigate the risk of employee burnout (see infographic below).

One way to mitigate the risk is through self-care and enabling team members to practice self-care. Self-care goes beyond practising meditation or yoga, going to the gym or classes to unwind and to build resilience. When working, self-care should also be part of our day-to-day, moment to moment interactions. This could include how we:

  • interact and communicate with each other so that you embrace multiple perspectives;

  • schedule meetings so that they are not back to back;

  • set expectations and deadlines that are realistic and, as much as possible, take into consideration the unpredictable;

  • enrol others when dealing with unexpected or red flag situations;

  • acknowledge that team members have other roles they play in the organization and in life.

At a leadership level, it is also critical to explore a robust and impactful program (not workshop) that will lay the foundations for leadership to shift mindsets and culture so that people can flourish in this new normal. This should include:

  • identifying and agreeing on team behaviours (which are observable and tangible) that promote collaboration;

  • fostering a habit of recognizing and rewarding behaviours as well as actions (not just financial outcomes) that encourages the creation of a safe workspace; and

  • nurturing real-time strength-based feedforward that supports self-improvement as well as promotes collaboration.

If you are exploring embarking on a program that shifts behaviours and mindsets in your organization from at multiple levels, do schedule a Zoom discovery call with us.

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