Gallop conducted a recent study of 7500 full-time employees and found that almost a quarter of them (23%) felt burned out in the office on a regular basis if not at all times. Nearly half (44%) reported experiencing burnout at some point. Employees who are on the verge of mental or emotional collapse in the workplace represent a significant challenge for employers. These employees are more prone to illnesses such as depression, coronary heart disease, high cholesterol, and more.
What Causes Employee Burnout?
Several factors contribute to employee burnout. These include:
- Difficult or impossible deadlines
- Unmanageable workload
- Unfair treatment at the office
- Limited support from management
- Working off the clock (i.e. responding to emails and text messages during off hours)
The Cost of Employee Burnout
As mentioned above, stressed out employees are more likely to experience physical and mental health issues. These medical costs translate to $125-$190 billion in health care expenses per year. Not only that, employees experiencing burnout are more likely to suffer from attendance issues (i.e. arriving late, leaving early, or calling out often). Given enough time, excessive workplace stress can result in employee turnover, which carries significant costs for businesses. With two-thirds of employees experiencing some kind of burnout, business managers need to take steps to reduce employees’ stress or be prepared to pay the costs.
How to Prevent Employee Burnout
Part of preventing burnout is ensuring smooth business operations. For managers this means:
- Knowing and cultivating employees’ strengths. When an employee is in a position that doesn’t match his or her skill set, he or she will become frustrated and disengage. Employers should take pains to match employees with jobs and tasks that allow them to utilize their skills and thrive. Encouraging employees to get involved in professional development activities can further hone their skills and motivate them.
- Working on employees’ weaknesses. While employees would prefer to play to their strengths, there will always be areas of their job that intimidate them. Instead of skirting the edges of these tasks, employers should encourage employees to improve their knowledge and grow in their abilities.
- Communicate often. If employers don’t communicate with their employees on a regular basis, they run the risk of overlooking employee frustrations. By maintaining frequent communications, managers and employers can identify stress points. Asking for feedback and opinions also makes employees feel like management values their opinion, which improves their overall job satisfaction. In fact, employees who feel like management supports them are 70% less likely to experience burnout.
Preventing employee burnout whenever possible is vital to keeping employees engaged and reducing absenteeism rates. If your company is struggling with poor employee attendance, contact the experts at Actec to learn how we can help.