How to Retain Employees and Beat Burnout

Burnout has been a hot topic recently, as has the “great resignation.” A record number of employees are choosing to leave their jobs, with many citing burnout as the cause. So, how can you help your employees avoid burnout and improve your retention rate?

What Causes Burnout?

Surveys find that the top three causes of burnout are:

  1. Unfair or low compensation
  2. Unreasonable workload
  3. Too much overtime or after-hours work

In addition to these problems, employees also cite poor management, a lack of connection between their work and corporate strategy, and negative workplace culture. It’s important to clearly communicate to employees the reasons why their work matters, how it contributes to the organization as a whole, and why they are valued by their team and management.

Keep in mind that the fatigue threshold will vary for each individual. It is also important to note that high performers are often most susceptible to burnout. These employees have a tendency to put a lot of pressure on themselves, making burnout worse.

Stay Flexible to Avoid Stress

Maintaining some flexibility in your workplace is a great way to reduce stress and avoid burnout. Flexible scheduling can help employees let go of smaller daily stressors that add up, like traffic during their commutes. Allowing employees to work from home at least some of the time can also give them a sense of control and shows that you trust them to stay productive independently.

Managers Should Take Accountability for Employees’ Burnout

As a manager, it’s up to you to take accountability for your employees’ burnout and take the necessary steps to help alleviate unnecessary stress. Be realistic when assigning tasks to employees. The goal should always be to increase efficient productivity, not just increase the number of assignments, meetings, or emails.

It’s also important to be aware of the amount of time spent on tasks that may be unnecessary. Consider which meetings could potentially be eliminated to free up time, and take care to always send concise emails.

Finally, you should always listen to your employees and take their complaints seriously. Allow space for them to clearly voice any concerns, whether that is in an anonymous suggestion box or scheduling time during meetings.

Offer Recognition

Remember that low pay is the number one cause of burnout and resignation, so it’s important to show your recognition for your employees’ hard work by paying them fairly. In addition to compensation, showing gratitude can go a long way. Small awards, gifts, and even simple verbal shout-outs let employees know that their hard work matters.

Take Vacations and Have Fun at Work

Set the example for your employees by taking vacation time. This shows your employees that it’s important to take a break and recharge to reduce stress and burnout. Through the regular workweek, you can also build in opportunities to have fun with your team. This can mean fun activities, playing games through the day, or even just sharing a joke or two during meetings. If you follow @TeamDLM on social media, you’ll see that our team takes time for activities like bowling or attending local sports games together and schedules in-office parties for holidays. We also love playing games like ping pong or competing in tournaments for games like Wordle. Doing these activities together helps us build friendships and improves teamwork while boosting company morale and preventing burnout.

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