As the number of employees suffering from burnout continues to increase, more employers are realizing the importance of instituting an employee burnout prevention program.
The Effect of Burnout
Burnout in the workplace is the result of a build up of anxiety and stress that lasts for long periods of time. Although there may be additional contributing factors, the stress and anxiety an employee feels are the result of a combination of constant work demands, stressful situations, increasing work pressures and feelings of not having any control over work.
Although the problem of workplace burnout has a direct and detrimental impact on the employee's physical, mental and emotional health, it also affects their coworkers, management personnel and any everyone the employee has contact with while performing his or her job. In fact, job burnout negatively affects the company itself.
Training Programs for Management and Supervisory Personnel
Supervisors and managers need to be able to identify when workers begin to show signs of employee burnout so preventative measures can be taken. Workshops and training programs for management and supervisory personnel need to be implemented to help them:
- Recognize the signs of burnout
- Learn how to keep open lines of communication with employees
- Find viable solutions to work problems and alleviate employee stress levels
The Importance of a Burnout Prevention Program
Since the rate of employee burnout is higher for certain occupations and within certain industries, it is important that programs to prevent burnout are instituted in these job situations as soon as possible. Many of these occupations are in areas that are considered helping professions. Examples of jobs in helping professions that have a high incidence of employee burnout include:
- Social workers
- Hospitality workers
- Law enforcement officers
- Mental health workers
Without preventative burnout programs, many experienced workers will leave their jobs, take early retirement or remain in their positions causing further damage to themselves and others
A Preventive Program for Stress and Burnout by Michael Karpovich
One type of preventive program for burnout is inviting a guest speaker to present an in-service or in-depth workshop on stress and burnout. Mr. Michael Scott Karpovich presents his workshop "The Art of Taking Care of Yourself" throughout the country as the keynote speaker to educational institutions and businesses associated with education.
In his presentation, Mr. Karpovich teaches employees specific skills and methods to prevent stress build up, reduce the possibility of job related burnout and maintain their perspective. In addition, Mr. Karpovich explains the six stages of burnout and how employees need to set healthy expectations and boundaries for themselves.
Stress Management and Burnout Rating Scale
Worksheets on stress management and burnout prevention from the American Civil liberties Union, known as the ACLU, can easily be adapted and given to employees at many different types of working environments. Included in the worksheets are:
- The physical, behavioral, mental and spiritual symptoms of long-term stress and burnout
- A burnout rating scale that includes ten questions that indicate the likeliness of whether or not you will burnout, scoring for the questions and equivalent scoring results
- The contributing factors to stress which include the nature of your work, personal factors, organizational factors and sociopolitical factors
- The qualities of effective and ineffective stress managers which includes active stress manager and passive victim of stress
- Personal strategies for managing stress
- How to reduce vulnerability and build resistance
- How to reduce the impact of stress reactions
- How to prevent stress and burnout within an organization
- A resource worksheet with sustainable goals
Resources on Preventative Programs for Burnout
- The Resilient Practitioner: Burnout Prevention and Self-Care Strategies for Counselors, Therapists, Teachers, and Health Professionals by Thomas M. Skovholt is available from Amazon.
- Vision Coach International offers corporate workshops on stress management and reducing burnout.
- Dangers of Emplopyee Burnout
A burnout prevention program helps employees understand job related burnout, identify the causes and signs of employee burnout and teach them successful methods and strategies to cope with this serious problem.