How to spot signs of burnout in your workforce and keep it all at a distance

We have all understood that burnout is a very real mental health issue. While remote working has lots of benefits, it can also lead to a dangerous blurring of workplace/home boundaries and a feeling of isolation among employees. We get it. But with many people being reluctant to confide in their managers about this deeply personal matter, how can managers spot the signs?


According to Forbes, there are three red flags to watch out for. Please read the full article here or read on for a summary of the key points:


– High levels of stress and mental fatigue have a negative impact on productivity. Those affected have trouble focusing on their work and are more likely to make mistakes. They may also feel that no matter how hard they try, their efforts are never good enough, particularly if they’re being micromanaged or are working for a toxic manager.


– Signs that an employee is highly stressed and unhappy include that they complain about their clients, become aggressive and argumentative, openly speak negatively about the company and are no longer are open to feedback. Ignore the signs at your peril for they are highly contagious.


– Employees suffering from burnout also become disengaged and mentally detached from the company. They stop contributing at meetings. Perhaps their workload is unmanageable and they feel that can’t take time off because things will be even worse for them when they get back.  And so the problem escalates…


– CEOs and managers sometimes gift perks to employees suffering from burnout in a bid to re-engage them. But these gestures don’t address the root of the problem and the employee usually ends up leaving anyway.


– Re-engaging burnt-out employees isn’t a quick fix and often, by the time it’s spotted, things have gone too far and the employee leaves anyway. Managers need to work hard to reduce workplace stress as a prevention tactic. They should meet with their employees regularly on a one-on-one basis to see how they are, and really listen to their feedback. They need to prioritise finding solutions that help alleviate work-related stress and lighten their subordinates’ workloads. And, if they’re unable to do so, they need to be transparent about it.


– Other ways to help keep burnout at a distance include insisting on time for rest and renewal, setting realistic work limits, boosting your team’s sense of control, providing meaningful recognition, and making a point of asking people what help or training they need to succeed.


Please get in touch to share your insights on how to combat employee burnout. We are keen to hear about how you address all your HR challenges, And, as regards the recruitment element of your activity, we would be delighted to lend our expert support. With a vast pool of experienced, talented, qualified job seekers on our books and more than 30 years’ experience in the field, we can find you the perfect candidates for all your open roles.