10 tips to stifle workplace burnout

by Jun 16, 2022

Do a quick Google search for “workplace burnout,” and you’ll get hit with a plethora of headlines. Quitting isn’t the answer. How to find a new job when you’re tired. Do you even know what burnout looks like? The workplace burnout is real. Translation? Everyone is tired. Everyone. A global survey, which focused largely on the Gen Z and millennial generations, cited burnout as one of the top-three reasons young people are fleeing their jobs for their own greener pastures.

What gives? How can we, as employers, managers, and team leaders, better support the burnout epidemic?

If you’re feeling the pressures from the ever-changing work environment that is 2023, here are some ways to help stifle the burnout before it torches the entire team:

  1. Be realistic about workloads. The historic labor shortage, which spans all industries, has forced current employees to take on more tasks … many of which may be too much. While keeping the doors open is definitely important, take extra care in delegating additional duties fairly and evenly. Even better? Absorb tasks where you can, and cancel others that can wait.
  2. Invest in appreciation gestures. Send care packages to employees after big life events (or just because!). Send an email telling everyone to sign off or go home early. If you work in an industry that doesn’t allow early departures, adjust schedules to include longer lunches. Sonic Boom’s Caught Ya module allows employees to give each other kudos on a daily basis!
  3. Understand when someone leaves. Leave your own emotions and concerns at the door, and be understanding when someone puts in their notice. While this may not help retain that specific employee, showing grace will leave a lasting impression and maintain workplace integrity.
  4. Recognize early signs. Things like changes in performance, increased absences, isolation outside of meetings, and signs of depression can all signal workplace burnout. If you’re concerned for an employee, don’t approach them from a place of accusation; instead, lead with compassion, voice your concern, and ask how you can support them.
  5. Don’t cancel check-ins. Those one-on-ones with your team can be the first things to get pushed or canceled for the sake of more “important” calls. Don’t! Keep them on the calendar to show that you do value everyone’s time and effort, and your team is the priority.
  6. Adopt flex time. If your company is open to more flex time during the day, encourage your team to take some extra breaks to exercise, get outside, or simply run errands. In today’s remote world, this is a great way to embrace the human behind the employee. We all have lives outside of work, and it’s okay the non-work life weaves in and out of work hours.
  7. Give kudos. Hard stop.
  8. Incentivize preventive exams. If you use a rewards program for your employees, offer incentives around important exams that can help flag physical signs of burnout. Our own Rewards system does this seamlessly for those clients who wish to offer rewards for doctor visits.
  9. Empower over micromanage. Be honest: Do you empower your team to do what you hired them to do without constant feedback or critique? If the answer is no, it may be time to revisit your managerial style. Feedback where needed is always important, but so is trusting your team to use the skills you hired them to use. Burnout is real among those who are frequently working against a micromanaging supervisor.
  10. Lead by example. No, we aren’t talking about your job tasks. We’re talking about adopting your own work-life balance and being vocal about it. Sign off once your shift is up. Don’t reply to emails at 1 a.m. Make signing off early on Friday a somewhat regular thing. If employees see their bosses embracing balance, they’ll feel more comfortable to do it themselves.

If you’re interested in learning how Sonic Boom can help decrease workplace burnout and increase enjoyment and productivity, contact us to request a demo or quote.