6 Ways to Handle Employee Burnout

Bayt.com, Contributor, Jul 28 2016

With overwhelming workloads, busy schedules and looming deadlines, employee burnout is bound to happen. Procrastination takes over, loss of motivation ensues, and efficiency comes to a stand-still. Fortunately, there are ways to manage this, help your employees and extinguish the flames of their burnout. Here are 6 ways to help your team recover, restore their once brilliant performance, and prepare them to shine again.

1.    Compensate fairly (and promptly)

According to the Bayt.com ‘Workplace Satisfaction in the MENA’ poll, April 2016, only 52.4% of professionals across the MENA region are satisfied with their current salaries. It goes without saying that your employees’ happiness largely depends on their salaries. Surveys show that delay in salary payment is one of the most pressing issues today, especially for startups. If, for some reason, you can’t pay like clockwork, consider to embrace a “damage limitation” strategy, including remuneration and benefits packages, which will allow you to mitigate the consequences of your delay and make your employees feel equally rewarded, in the most cost-effective way for your company.

2.    Appreciate success

No matter what they tell you about this, employees love to be recognized for their efforts and contribution to the organization’s overall advancement. Be ready to notice any successful performance and, without being too predictable, be generous in celebrating a well-done job. Appreciating your employees will act as a tremendous boost to their individual satisfaction, as well as a powerful incentive for continuous improvement. Fortunately, seven in 10 professional respondents to the Bayt.com ‘Employee Engagement in the MENA’ survey, March 2014, say their managers value their skills and contributions. 

3.    Eliminate fear

As an employer, you should always make sure your employees are being heard all along the way. Invite them often to friendly face-to-face meetings so that you can listen to their needs and eventually identify an emergency at its initial stage. To drive a fear-based management culture out of the workplace, keep the door open for your employees and encourage constructive and transparent dialogue. 70% of respondents to the Bayt.com ‘Employee Engagement in the MENA’ survey say they can disagree with their manager without fear of getting in trouble.

4.    Empower passion and creativity

As obvious as it may sound, making your employees follow their passion is essential to unleashing their productivity. According to the Bayt.com ‘Passion for Work in the MENA’ survey, February 2016, 90.2% of respondents say they give their jobs 100% of their effort and passion. Avoid making your employees feel stifled in their current roles. Instead, consider the option of having skilled employees move to a position they feel more passionate about. This also means that you should encourage side projects, with employees investing their time, energies and enthusiasm to any sort of personal interest. Not only is this functional to their happiness, but the company will also reap the benefits in the terms of creativity and corporate innovation. 

5.    Clarify roles and promote a healthy work-life balance

The causes of employee burnout differ from case to case, but they generally fall into two broad categories: a work-life imbalance and work-related stress. According to the Bayt.com ‘Work Life Balance in the MENA’ poll, September 2012, eight in 10 respondents would consider changing their job if it can allow them a better work-life balance; another 14.8% feel better prioritization of their home and work tasks is the key to a better work-life balance. Start clarifying your employees’ responsibilities and what is expected of them over a specific amount of time. Along with this, allow for flexible working hours, paid time off and vacation days, to alleviate the most frequent work-related stressors. 

6.    Educate

Quoting the famous adage, “prevention is better than cure”. Providing information on burnout and how your employees (and managers) can prevent it is an alternative way to take action. Equipped with adequate knowledge and know-how, employees will be able to identify core symptoms of burnout at work, such as lack of concentration and difficulty in setting priorities, and an overall lukewarm attitude towards work. This way, you’re also fighting the tendency to hide crises within the workplace, sweeping them under the rug.

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