As a manager, motivating your staff is paramount to productivity. Along with ensuring that your team has the tools to meet corporate goals, watch for signs of burnout. It can cause even the best employee to lose focus. Common symptoms include, but are not limited to, increased absences, rejecting constructive criticism, or escalating self-isolation. If you have an employee experiencing these, take action immediately. Ignoring burnout can negatively impact productivity and lead an employee to leave your organization. Here are some ways to intervene when you suspect burnout.
Ask employees to learn something new. Employees suffering from burnout may be seeking a new challenge. Howard Mittman who previously served as the CEO of Bleacher Report believes that learning new information helps him be more productive. Learning new skills not only allows you to expand your knowledge but also helps you to find creative solutions to challenges. Consider inviting motivational or educational speakers to your team meetings to encourage a fresh outlook. One way to do this and encourage teamwork is to ask each employee to talk about their favorite hobby, author, or sport.
Protect Your Team
Schedule individual meetings with team members to gauge their stress levels and ensure they maintain a positive work-life balance. Employees with stressors at home may be less productive at work. On the other hand, they may offer to take on additional projects at work so they can temporarily forget what is going on at home. Both situations lead to burnout, so it is important to manage the situation with sensitivity and professionalism.
Stay on top of your team’s goals and projects with a project management application. Track the progress of each employee individually and as a cohesive team. If you see one employee is not on target, speak with them to determine if they are overwhelmed by burnout or have a disproportionate amount of work. Once you know the cause of the delay, you can better use your management skills to motivate the employee and get the project back on target.
Your employees look to you in times of uncertainty. If your natural response to challenges is aggressive, teammates avoid bringing situations to you until they are out of control. Your employees struggle to maintain the status quo. You can also suffer from burnout with your elevated stress level. Maintain a calm demeanor and your staff will be more proactive in bringing their concerns to you.
Research team-building activities to keep your team working as one unit. It is important to keep your team motivated toward the goal, especially during stressful times. Hold meetings outside for a breath of fresh air. Surprise teammates with their favorite coffee on Monday morning. Recognize accomplishments, big and small among each staff member and comment on how they improved the team performance.
Keep in mind, that the best way to treat burnout, is to prevent it from becoming an issue in the first place. Proactively using these strategies helps keep your team focused and banish burnout from your workplace.