tackling the primary cause of the Great Resignation
The “Great Resignation” has been a buzz word we have all talked about now for the past several months and it doesn’t seem to be going away. According to data from the BLS released just recently, 4.4 million workers left their jobs in September, marking an all-time high for the Great Resignation.
The Great Resignation has a cause, though. Is it because employees want more flexibility in their work/life balance than what their current employer provides? Is it a desire to work from home full-time but the lack of a viable alternative? Was it being stuck at home that made people realize they wanted a change in careers when the job market was better? All of this and more are true.
The fall 2021 Hiring Report released by Monster though indicates that burnout is the #1 reason employees are quitting their jobs. Mental health has become a growing concern ever since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Many employees feel like they are “always on” and work longer hours when at home. Additionally, there is a feeling of loneliness. Consequently, more employees feel lonely and cut off from their coworkers because there is less camaraderie and social interaction at work. Feeling exhausted can result from a variety of factors, not just one or two. More than half of employees said they were burned out, according to a springtime Indeed survey.
But exactly what is burnout in the workplace? Burnout is characterized by three main characteristics: exhaustion, cynicism (less identification with the job), and feelings of diminished professional ability. Verywell Mind defines burnout as a response to prolonged or chronic job stress.
Signs and symptoms of employee burnout that Verywell Mind reports include:
- Alienation from work-related activities: People consider their jobs to be frustrating and stressful. They might also develop a pessimistic attitude toward their jobs and their coworkers.
- Physical symptoms: This may involve discomfort in the head, the stomach, or the intestines.
- Emotional exhaustion: People experience exhaustion and exhaustion. To finish their work, they lack the necessary energy.
- Reduced performance: Both at work and at home, it may have an impact on routine tasks. Tasks make them feel bad, and they find it hard to focus. They are also lacking in imagination.
- Depression: Workplace burnout can have characteristics similar to depression, such as hopelessness and cognitive and physical symptoms.
As we can see, it’s critical to combat employee burnout for both the mental health of workers as well as job resignation reasons. Some may even say that the Great Resignation is causing more employees to burnout due to hiring needs because of the This trickled down effect is probably very true in some instances, says Great Resignation. What steps can we take to stop the Great Resignation? How can we prevent leaving of our employees? To prevent employee burnout, investing time and money in them is a good place to start. This blog post will look at eight strategies for keeping staff members content and employed by your business.
- Check-In with Employees
To see how your staff is doing, have regular check-in meetings. It gives managers a chance to observe how their team members are doing and determine whether they are stressed out due to the tasks they have on hand. One of the most effective ways to spot employee burnout is probably during these meetings. Additionally, it gives employers a chance to speak with any employees who are starting to feel burned out one-on-one and talk about how you can support them.
Goals for your company’s employees can also be discussed during check-in meetings. Harvard Business Review suggests asking employees, “if they could shape their dream job at your company, what would it be?” This gives staff members a chance to discuss the direction they want to take and enables you to start planning how to mold this role for them. Knowing you are considering opportunities for long-term growth for them at your company gives employees motivation as well.
Additionally, employees enjoy feeling important and having an impact on the business they work for. Make sure to acknowledge their work and the value they are bringing during your check-in meetings. At your business, employees want to feel like they are serving a purpose.
Things to consider:
- You might want to hold some of your check-in meetings somewhere else, like a coffee shop. Meeting outside the office to have some of these conversations is a way to talk in a casual, open setting. Depending on how frequently you meet, you might not do this every time. Additionally, it is a reasonably cheap method of entertaining a worker.
- Weekly 15-minute meetings are something that managers should think about holding. Jennifer Moss, author of the new book, “The Burnout Epidemic: The Rise of Chronic Stress and How We Can Fix It,” suggests holding short 15-minute weekly meetings. The highs and lows of the week can be discussed during these meetings, along with suggestions for how managers can make things easier the following week. It’s a straightforward task that can benefit productivity and mental health. Jennifer added that to accurately gauge an employee’s performance, specific questions should be asked. Her research found that an average person says they are “fine” 14 times a week when they are asked how they are doing; 19% of the time they are lying.
- Monitor Workloads
Managers need to keep an eye on workloads to make sure nobody is carrying an excessive load. Although workloads may increase during certain seasons of the year, managers should take steps to prevent employees from carrying a heavy load all year long. Examine employees who are working a demanding schedule and look for ways to reduce that workload. Observe targets and expectations as well. To avoid anyone feeling overworked and putting in excessive effort to reach your goals, make sure they are realistic. Achievable goals are necessary.
- Provide Mental Health Support
The support of employees’ mental health can be offered by employers in a variety of ways. One way to do this is by offering mental health days. It permits workers to take the necessary time off for themselves and for self-care. If your company does not already offer mental health days, you might want to think about doing so in 2022.
You should also think about adding wellness counseling through employee assistance programs to your benefits package. If you’re not sure if your health insurance covers counseling and wellness programs, you might want to look into it since some healthcare providers already include those services in their health insurance. Share this information with staff members if it is part of your insurance so they are aware of it’s availability.
You might also consider hiring a wellness coach who can provide employees with advice on good mental health practices a few times a year. An educational group lunch would be nice at this time. Even group wellness activities like yoga, painting, having a masseuse come in during lunch may be something to think about.
Last but not least, if staff members are feeling overworked or stuck on a project, encourage them to take a break. They can unwind with a quick walk or snack break and return with a clear head!
- Employees are surveyed to compare working from home vs. in the Office
There are benefits and drawbacks to working from home as opposed to going into the office. According to a recent Bankrate survey, 56% of workers preferred flexible hours or remote work. Another element that has contributed to the Great Resignation is the ability to work from home. However, the issues with socialization and disconnection from coworkers are actual. According to the Buffer 2021 State of Remote Work survey, 16% of respondents said they had trouble collaborating and 16% said they felt lonely while working from home. Is hybrid the miracle cure? From my own observations, it appears that many people prefer the hybrid work schedule because it offers the best of both worlds. Sending out a survey to your staff to determine what the majority of them would prefer would help you determine what is best for your company. The survey will reveal which schedule would result in the happiest workers for you.
- Promote Office Camaraderie and Connection
It’s also crucial to set aside time for team members to interact and develop relationships. This can be related to the earlier discussion of working from home. It’s critical to foster an environment where people can get to know one another whether you have employees who work in the office, from home, or on a hybrid schedule. According to Harvard Business Review, their COVID-Era survey data showed that both blue and white collar workers around the world place a higher priority on having a “good relationship with co-workers” than on many other job attributes.
Virtual events, like team trivia or virtual happy hours, can be held if you are unable to host in-person events. Even online classes in cocktail or cooking creation are available. For the sake of office camaraderie, anything that can facilitate a good time for the group is a plus. Although social gatherings held in person are unquestionably a better way for staff members to get to know one another, virtual events are a good fallback if in-person gatherings are not feasible.
- Encourage Work-Life Balance
The ability to balance work and life has probably always been important for most employees, but it’s now playing a bigger role in whether or not they choose to work for a particular company. Encourage employees to use their vacation time as a best practice, particularly as the year comes to a close and they still have time left. This enables you to show employees that you are concerned about their wellbeing and that you want them to be able to take time off.
Shutting down the office early for the holidays is a good idea, too. The value of spending time with family, especially over the holidays, is reinforced by this. It’s also critical to provide flexible schedules so that employees can attend family or religious events. Allowing someone to attend to significant personal events during the workday is welcome if they have a personal obligation.
Finally, some businesses even allow employees to start and end work at any time as long as they put in 8 hours a day. This creates a more flexible schedule. Why not give someone the option to start earlier or stay later if they complete the same number of hours of work?
- Upskill Employees
Employers can gain a lot from the practice of upskilling employees. It can aid workers in enhancing job satisfaction (avoiding burnout) and subsequently aid in employee retention. The company also reaps financial rewards from it.
But what does “upskilling” actually mean? According to AG5, it is the process of raising knowledge and skills in a particular field to a new level. In lieu of hiring new people, this is also an opportunity to advance existing staff members and support their development.
According to Monster’s Fall 2021 Hiring Report, skills training would increase the likelihood that 45% of employees would stay with their employer. Employees, particularly those who have been in the same role for a while, can enjoy a brand-new, exciting experience. This presents them with the opportunity for a new role at your company rather than having to find a different job. According to a Gallup survey, the cost of replacing a single employee can be between 1.5 and 2 times that person’s annual salary. When you consider the costs associated with recruiting a new hire, including those associated with advertising the position, onboarding a new hire, and other costs, this is probably very true. If they were promoted from within, their starting salary might even be higher.
- Provide Management Training
Offering new managers management training might also be something to think about. Employee retention and engagement are greatly influenced by managers. According to a Randstad study, 60% of respondents said they had quit their jobs or planned to do so because of bad managers, while 58% said they would accept a lower salary in exchange for a job with a better manager.
Employees under the control of bad managers may become stressed out and leave. Managers can learn the best practices for managing employees by attending management training. In order to set reasonable expectations, communicate clearly and effectively, give appropriate feedback, recognize employees’ accomplishments, and delegate work, they must possess the necessary skills. The corporate culture and employee morale are significantly impacted by great managers.
The Beginning of the End of the Great Resignation
We just went in-depth on 8 strategies for preventing employee burnout. Burnout among employees is a very real issue that has grown in importance since the pandemic. However, it is one area that employers can work to control to stop further resignations. Keeping employees happy and healthy may not be the only solution to end the Great Resignation, but it is unquestionably a good place to start.