Help Prevent Burnout on Your Team
Burnout is rarely an individual phenomenon; fixing and preventing it requires leadership. You can help your team thrive by implementing the following advice.
WATCH FOR WARNING SIGNS
- The signs of burnout are obvious in some people but subtle in others. Keep n eye out for tiredness, lack of focus, depressed mood, hostility, and expressions of hopelessness.
- Regularly check in with team members to gauge their physical, cognitive and emotional energy.
SET LIMITS ON WORKLOADS
- Talk to your team about its collective capacity, and ensure that assignments and deadlines don’t exceed it.
- Shield your team from external pressures, including unreasonable or unclear client and management demands.
INSIST ON RENEWAL
- Communicate that optimal performance depends on rest and renewal. Encourage people to set sensible limits on work hours.
- Set an example by keeping reasonable hours yourself.
- Make sure your team members take their full vacation time.
- Clarify expectations; grant flexibility on where, when, and how people get work done.
- Advocate for the resources your team needs to perform.
- Create uninterrupted time for people to make progress on important tasks.
MAKE RECOGNITION MEANINGFUL
- Regularly highlight wins and successes, even small ones.
- Recognize and reward people for helping others.
- Note the positive impact of your team’s work on others.
- Routinely ask team members about their development goals and what resources are required to achieve them.
- Share what you’re learning and how you’re doing it.
FACILITATE MUTUAL SUPPORT
- Talk regularly about progress toward team goals.
- At team meetings, ask what assistance people need and can offer one another.
- Be open about asking for and giving support.
- Don’t tolerate incivility on your team. Set an example for respectful, compassionate behavior toward others.
- Encourage people to share what’s happening in their lives outside of work.