How Do You Handle A Burnt Out Employee?

When an employee isn’t meeting expectations and giving you grief in the process, it’s time for disciplinary action, right? Not so fast. There could be a good reason especially when it’s coming from someone who is usually a top performer. In fact, when a talented team member suddenly seems disengaged and off their game, it could be a sign of burnout.

Why does it happen and what can you do? There are a number of reasons that burnout can become an issue. These include:

  • A lack of challenging work and assignments.
  • An unmanageable workload over an extended period of time.
  • Feeling unappreciated and undervalued.
  • Unclear job expectations and unrealistic deadlines.
  • A work-life imbalance and personal struggles at home.

Whatever the case for your particular employees, there are ways you can reverse the issue before it’s too late and they call it quits. For instance, you can:

Schedule a meeting.

It’s up to you to dig deeper and find out the source of the burnout. For instance, if it’s due to a too-heavy workload or unclear expectations, work with your employee to delegate tasks to other team members and clarify goals. If, however, it’s due to personal issues at home, discuss whether more flexible hours, at least on a temporary basis, would be helpful.

Encourage breaks.

Everyone needs a break during the day to stay productive. So if your employee is working through lunch and isn’t take the downtime they need, it’s no wonder they’re getting burned out and disengaged. Instead, encourage them to take a walk, get a cup of coffee, or get outside the office for a few minutes to refresh their mind and body.

Encourage time off.

If your employee hasn’t taken a vacation in a couple of years, then now’s the time. Taking regular breaks from work, even if it’s simply to stay home and get organized, can do wonders for energy and mood. Also, if they’re regularly online late at night or on weekends working, encourage them to unplug and enjoy their downtime.

By taking the steps above, the situation won’t change overnight. But, over time, you’ll notice them becoming happier, more engaged and productive, too.

Need help adding to your team so core staff doesn’t get burned out?

Turn to Morgan Hunter. As one of Kansas City’s top staffing agencies, we have access to leading-edge candidates who can fill the gap and make a difference for you and your staff. Contact us today to get started.



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