Many of today's employees, particularly those of the Millennial generation, are experiencing "burnout" earlier and earlier in their careers. In spite of recent efforts to increase employee satisfaction and decrease turnover, many workers still find themselves exhausted, stressed, and overall fed up with the job.
There are a few theories behind such a phenomenon.
First, superficial perks such as free food and pool tables are sometimes used to distract employees from long work hours, low pay, and high stress. It is imperative to note that this is not always the case; sometimes perks do help to create a more positive environment. However, such perks cannot – and should not – replace what really matters: job satisfaction and meaningful work.
Second, both employers and employees must recognize the basic humanity of the other. Employees are not just financial assets; rather, they are individuals wishing to provide for themselves and their families. Likewise, employers are often under the same stress as their employees.
Recognizing the employer’s humanity allows one to sympathize and provide great work. In these scenarios, both parties must view the employer-employee relationship as a connection between individuals, rather than a mere financial transaction.
Although there are many deadlines and projects going on at all times, one must prioritize what needs to be done over what can wait. Which tasks have a deadline? For which tasks are others depending on you? Which tasks can wait until tomorrow if need be? Establish clear lines of communication with all parties in order to alleviate the frustration that can arise with misaligned deadline expectations.
Every individual needs time for rest and recreation. In spite of everything that needs to be done, taking the time to read a book, listen to music, or go for a walk can lead to increased happiness and, therefore, greater productivity. In order ensure that such activities will be completed, however, employees must make it a priority. Put it on your to-do list just as you would put any other task.
Make a List:
Organizing one’s thoughts is one way to relieve mental clutter and stress. Making a physical list of everything that needs to be done, in order of priority, will allow employees to visualize their day in advance. Furthermore, checking items off the list leads to a sense of accomplishment after every task, thereby increasing motivation throughout the day.
Take work one day at a time. Learning to find the silver lining in every situation will allow one to maintain focus, stay productive, and enjoy their role. Frequently revisiting and reflecting on accomplishments, establishing a priority of enjoying the company of others, and making time for relaxation will allow employees to push forward against all strongholds.