How To Help Your Team Deal With Burnout

How To Help Your Team Deal With Burnout

The phrase “workplace burnout” has become popular across all sectors and organizations. However, a lot of employers are unaware of the subtleties of employee burnout and how severely it impacts their teams.

Symptoms of untreated chronic stress are used to define employee burnout. Without a comprehensive strategy for change, the condition is unlikely to improve.

Employee stress can come from both inside and outside of the workplace, but certain circumstances can lead to burnout. When these problems are ignored, engagement and productivity suffer, which leads to a high turnover rate.

Employers will gain from taking action to address the root causes of burnout and offer practical solutions in order to prevent the cycle of burnout that encourages ongoing employee churn. But it’s not always simple to spot burnout among employees. Employees may not even be aware they are experiencing burnout in its early stages.

Employers must develop the ability to identify the signs of employee burnout and pinpoint the root causes in their organization.

What Is Workplace Burnout?

Workplace burnout is a syndrome that the World Health Organization (WHO) categorises as coming from ongoing workplace stress that has not been effectively managed. The signs of burnout include exhaustion, a rise in hostility and negativity toward one’s job, and a decline in professional effectiveness.

It’s crucial to remember that burnout results from stress that hasn’t been effectively managed rather than just workplace stress. Untreated chronic stress can make workers depressed, anxious, and distracted, which has an adverse effect on their performance at work and in their personal relationships. It usually isn’t caused by a single incident but rather by workplace stressors that persist over time without being addressed.

What Are the Main Reasons for Burnout?

Modern workplaces are become faster and more demanding in order to meet or surpass client expectations. Employees often feel pressured to live up to false standards as a consequence, which causes them to gradually raise their tolerance. Employees sometimes bear these huge burdens alone until they exhaust themselves to the point where burnout is obvious.

Understanding the major causes of employee burnout is a huge step in figuring out how to deal with it. We provide the top five variables that are most strongly correlated with employee burnout.

Unfair Treatment at the Workplace

High levels of burnout are 2.3 times more likely to occur in workers who feel mistreated at work. Bias, discrimination, favoritism, mistreatment by coworkers or management, and inconsistently applied compensation are just a few examples of unfair treatment.

Unfair treatment in the workplace, regardless of where it originates, causes a loss of trust that ruptures the psychological connection that gives work meaning. The psychological safety and sense of belonging of employees are undermined by persistent toxic behaviour (actions that make workers feel undervalued, belittled, or unsafe).

Lack of Communication With Managers

When upper management fails to communicate assignments, company news, or crucial policies in a timely manner, trust is lost. Employees become frustrated when they are unclear about what is required of them, the tasks they must complete, or how to perform their jobs properly.

Instead of completing tasks, too much time and effort is spent figuring out what the manager wants. Employers therefore exert more effort than is necessary, which lowers production.

Lack of Support

Preventing burnout relies heavily on manager support. Our research reveals that while only 53% of employees believe their employers actually care about their mental health, 74% of employees want them to.

Burnout can be avoided by having supportive managers who are receptive to their staff’s needs and encourage them. Burnout is more likely to happen when managers act in a way that implies they don’t care about their staff.

Unreasonable Workload

Employees are 2.2 times more likely to report experiencing burnout if they strongly agree that they always have too much to do. The way that employees view their jobs is impacted by longer hours and heavier workloads. Burnout happens to even highly effective workers who are enthusiastic about their jobs.

According to the aforementioned Modern Health study, 56% of high performers are burned out in their current positions, despite the fact that 76% of high performers are enthusiastic about their work. Regardless of their level of engagement, employees can easily become overworked when their work seems burdensome or never-ending.

Time Pressure

Employees are 70% less likely to experience high burnout if they frequently or always have enough time to complete all of their work. Increased stress is brought on by unreasonable timelines and demands.

They may also cause other projects to be delayed, which might have a snowball effect. Burnout may be imminent even when workers comply with excessive requests because of the unfavourable working environment.

What Are the Signs of Employee Burnout?

A important aspect of promoting mental health is understanding of how your staff feel. While many companies may grasp the causes and consequences of burnout, detecting the signs may be challenging.

These are a few red signs that might be symptoms of staff burnout.

Emotional, Mental, and Physical Exhaustion 

Physical indications of weariness could be simple to recognise. For instance, a vibrant employee may become introverted and demonstrate low energy. An employee renowned for getting to work early can start coming in late.

Fatigue may not usually display obvious symptoms. Instead, workers may express signs of weariness including sleep difficulties, feeling depleted or fuzzy, and experiencing headaches.


Employee engagement may be tough to define. Yet, when an employee gets disengaged, changes in behaviour could be evident.

For instance, a deterioration in work quality might be a warning indicator. Generally, diminished excitement or disconnected actions like a remote employee unexpectedly turning up to meetings off-camera are also indications of disengagement.

Decreased Productivity 

This is one of the most typical indications of burnout and may act as an early signal. Employees may have problems concentrating and overall look less efficient. As burnout grows, errors are prevalent, and personnel take longer to finish tasks.

Other Signs 

Burnout may result in greater stress levels identified by distinct behaviours. For instance, increasing absences might suggest burnout.

Changes in conduct at work are also prevalent. These may include decreased participation, higher sensitivity to feedback, and negative or irritable behaviour.

How Managers Can Help Employees Deal with Burnout

It’s critical to detect the aforementioned symptoms of burnout as such and not only as performance issues that can call for disciplinary action. It might be tempting to provide immediate answers to the issue after you’ve discovered burnout in your team. However, treating the symptom will not deal with the root reasons of team burnout.

By following these steps, you may determine the best way to assist your staff in coping with burnout.

Find Out the Real Cause

According to studies, companies often are unable to gauge the degree of employee adjustment. For instance, as noted in earlier study results, just 46% of workers genuinely feel that their employers encourage them to take time off for mental health requirements like counselling.

To better address employee well-being, have one-on-one discussions with them. To make sure your colleagues feel comfortable sharing, take a careful, curious, and non-accusatory approach to the topic. Ask questions to encourage workers to speak up about feeling overwhelmed rather than thinking you have the solution.

Show That You Care About Your Team

You should naturally support your staff as their boss. As a result, your behaviour should be crystal obvious evidence that you care about the health and wellbeing of your staff. Think about how your relationships with staff members might lessen the pressure that causes burnout.

Instead of conveying your team’s needs and expectations, try coming to agreements. Remind staff members that it’s OK to express their feelings of being overworked, and urge them to do so so that plans may be made to lighten workloads or establish more flexible schedules. Don’t set up strict overtime plans, and refrain from treating every assignment like a fire drill.

Introduce Your Staff to Mental Wellness Programs

Nearly 80% of workers think that prioritising their mental health regularly can help them avoid serious mental illnesses or clinical-level care, and 79% would be more likely to stick with a company that offered excellent mental health benefits. You can improve resilience and prevent burnout when you provide your staff easy access to tools for taking care of their mental health.

You can eliminate the stigma around mental health treatment and enhance the culture in your company by encouraging workers to seek outside mental health options.

Be Compassionate and Empathetic

Different people react differently to stress. For both managers and employees, workplace frustration is a common occurrence. It’s crucial to work through problems as a team with your employees rather than causing division. Recognize that employee burnout is not a sign of personal weakness but rather an opportunity to continue on a different path.

You can create a sense of belonging that makes your employees feel heard by demonstrating empathy and compassion for them. In the end, what’s best for your business is what’s best for your employees. You’ll achieve your objectives if you make them a priority.

Don’t Forget Your Own Well-Being

The most effective bosses encourage their team members to follow their example. When your staff declines to take on more responsibilities when they are already carrying a heavy burden, establish limits and act with respect.

Share how you feel when you’re feeling overburdened so that your staff members may identify your flaws and become more open about revealing their own. Take some time off to demonstrate the importance of rest and leisure so that your staff will feel at ease using their own paid time off.

Burnout among workers is becoming increasingly prevalent. Employees are less likely to experience severe burnout and look for other job options when companies support teams in prioritising their mental health.

Less than one-third of employees who are enrolled in any mental health benefits believe that it satisfies their requirements, despite the fact that 79% of workers are more likely to remain with a firm that offers high-quality mental health benefits. Download the Modern Health guide Taking Care of Burnout to discover more about the true causes of burnout, how it impacts workers, and the best remedies for businesses, teams, and individuals.

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