5 Signs of Employee Burnout and What You Can Do About It


Burnout is a buzzword you may have heard before but what does it really mean?

When people have too much on their plate or feel overwhelmed, they may notice a decline in productivity, engagement, and morale. Between work and life, they may feel stretched too thin.

This is burnout — and it can affect everything from job performance to personal health.

A staggering 95% of businesses report their employees suffer from burnout, and are mentally, physically, and emotionally drained. But not everyone knows how to address it.

Here’s how to recognize the key signs of burnout and begin to address them.

1. Overworked Employees

Everything from an unreasonable workload to the never-ending work day (hello, smartphones!) can overwhelm an employee. Workloads that are heavier than normal can cause employees to overwork without breaks, miss deadlines, and generally create a frantic environment.

Addressing workload concerns, establishing off-hour communication boundaries, and setting reasonable expectations for deadlines can all help alleviate the pressures of associated with this type of stress.

2. Lack of Motivation

Motivation is necessary to spark productivity and an overall positive attitude at work. When people feel stuck in a role and don’t see opportunities for growth, their satisfaction with a job may decrease.

Providing opportunities for professional growth, like learning new skills or attending conferences, can help inspire employees and reconnect them to their jobs. Feedback also plays a key role in motivation, and positive reinforcement can reignite an employee’s spark.

3. Low Morale

Morale defines the general spirit of a company. Positive encouragement, a strong work culture, and satisfactory compensation and benefits are essential to employees’ well-being. When these needs are not met, it can lead to burnout.

Encouraging open communication and positive feedback can boost morale and potentially create opportunities for brand ambassadorship.


4. Excess Absence

Day-to-day stress, along with any of the factors on this list, can lead to increased absenteeism. When unplanned absences begin to rack up, signs often point to burnout.

Beginning to understand why your employees may take unplanned absences, is the first step toward solving the problem. A good place to start? The other items on this list :)

5. Fear of Expression

When people feel unheard or as if their voice doesn’t matter, they may stop offering opinions or shut down. Encouraging communication between leadership and employees, and increasing transparency can help create an atmosphere in which people feel comfortable providing valuable feedback.

Now what?

Once signs of burnout are identified — acknowledge them! Creating an open dialogue around burnout can reduce the stigma of the issue, and create a comfortable space in which people can voice the need for time off or support.

A layer of support for stress management can help encourage purpose, growth and connection. Whether you’re working with an internal HR team, or with tools like Psocratic, providing resources will help push your team onward and upward.


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