Burnout rates amongst employees are on the rise, especially since the change to remote work. Working from home has allowed individuals to slip through the cracks when it comes to logging off from their jobs after 5 pm. Plus the pressure to perform their best while not under their manager's eyes has led many to overextending themselves. This is where HR can step in to rescue team members from burning out. If you’re an HR professional, here are four tips to help your team members and managers avoid feeling overwhelmed.
- Provide Virtual Help
Whether it’s a one-on-one video conference or outside professional help, you need to adapt to the digital space when providing help. While some team members want to speak with you about their problems or issues, others might want to talk to another person. Be prepared to meet everyone’s needs, and perhaps brainstorm new ways to assist people.
Maybe it’s promoting mental health care for employees to meet with outside resources to talk through their hurdles. Also adding in some health centric classes can help people’s overall physical health too. This could include sessions like workouts, yoga or cooking. You never know what people might be interested in, so offering variety will help jolt them out of their comfort zone and help with meeting everyone’s needs.
- Switch Up the Working Day
Sometimes the monotony of a job can lead team members to feeling bored and uninspired. Losing that spark can eventually turn into burnout or people leaving the company for other opportunities. To avoid this, you should work with team leaders for ways to change up a team’s workday.
A simple and small way to help keep team members focused or excited about work is encouraging them to listen to music. Encouraging sound within their home working space will make them feel less like they’re alone, and the right music can set the tone for a productive day. Or maybe it’s setting up one day a week where people are allowed to work in a different space. A visit to a local hotspot or office space will shift people out of their routine. Any of these tactics can assist teams with spicing up the everyday grind.
- Encourage People to Walk Out the Door
One of the most effective ways to prevent burnout is making sure team members switch off from work at the end of the day. Shutting off the computer, staying out of email, and setting up ‘do not disturb’ work messaging are all parameters that individuals should be comfortable following.
Hosting informative sessions about turning off at the end of the day will help people understand that they should switch off after work. Setting up a schedule every quarter as a reminder to people will assure everyone gets the benefits of unplugging.
While some of the bigger tech giants are known for having extra benefits for their employees on their work sites like restaurants and gyms, this can create instances where people feel isolated from family and friends. Although having everything in one place makes it convenient for employees to get things done, it discourages outside of work connections. As with most things in life, finding that happy medium is key. Working with leadership to help establish work-life balances will help combat this problem.
- Talk with Managers - Frequently
It’s not just team members who experience burnout, leadership individuals can be vulnerable to it as well. Being a resource to those leaders can help prevent an entire company meltdown. Much like scheduling one-on-one sessions with different employees, check in on leadership as well on a monthly basis.
Remind them that they set the example for the team. They should use their vacation time or log off from work at the end of the day. Yes, as the leader, they are the trendsetters and figureheads for team morale and standards. However, they aren’t superhuman and need to have a release somehow. Hence, further showing why they are the template for illustrating the need for taking that time for themselves.
Meeting with leadership also helps identify anyone who might need to talk with HR about working hours or time off. This is also a chance to provide tips and help to managers for motivating their remote team. It can be jarring to team members when they’re summoned to meet with HR, but sometimes it’s necessary to get the point across to them. It can also help relieve the burden from other managers, making them less likely to suffer burnout as well.
Preventing burnout in the workplace is an ongoing challenge. For HR it’s something that can be prevented or significantly reduced by incorporating suggestions from the above. The key to a productive company is its team members, and ensuring their health will aid with overall success.
Guest Blog Submission by Sara Carter