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Employee burnout: Immediately accessible solutions

Someone who will truly listen at work and provide the space for support, validation and exploration is key for employee happiness.

Man working in an office at a computer. — Photo: © Tim Sandle
Man working in an office at a computer. — Photo: © Tim Sandle

Addressing employee burnout and related productivity pitfalls can be readily overcome, according to Adi Segal, CEO of Hapi. Moreover, better workplace skills and improved metal awareness are key to making the price easier to ingest,

Segal adds, in outlining the strategy to Digital Journal, there are numerous tactical strategies to start addressing the issue.

These include:

Practice makes perfect

According to Segal: “As with any skill, listening ability is correlated with frequency of use. Like working a muscle, it will get stronger over time. Similarly, leaders should regularly schedule and conduct sessions with their employees to actually practice “the art of listening” rather than just “hearing what someone said.”

Segal adds: “This in order to fully comprehend the content, meaning and implications of that discourse. People must embrace the notion that listening is not just a concept, but rather something that requires intention and action.”

Train your team

Teams can be boosted by acquiring listening skills. Here Segal proposes: “There are numerous emotional intelligence and active listening courses leaders can provide individuals or their entire team. Just as the state mandates harassment training, business executives should make listening certification an important part of their own, and their team’s, professional development. Go a step further and make it a prerequisite or requirement for the job. If and when needed, expert trainers can be engaged to run active listening exercises, either in-person or virtually. Such professional resources can help expedite the key learning needed to put this skill into meaningful practice and start positively impacting people and the business bottom line.”

Recommend business resources

Analysis by NSC and NORC at University of Chicago reveals organizations that support mental health see a return of $4 for every dollar invested. These bodies have built a Mental Health Cost Calculator that can demonstrate and quantify the financial impact on another company.

Segal explains: “Research making abundantly clear that talking to strangers can supercharge happiness. With the advent of Certified Listening as a Service (CLaaS), managers can promote mental health apps and resources that increase access to care and human connectivity with 24/7/365 availability, lower the bar to entry, and simply provide a safe space for team members (from the C-suite to the front line) to vent, relieve stress, get advice, bounce ideas or just have company when feeling lonely or isolated. Such access anywhere, anytime mHealth platforms can be a boon for employee retention, recruitment and organizational transitions.”

In terms of the medical assessment, Segla offers: “Many psychologists even admit that, often, people dealing with work and life issues don’t need therapy, but rather they just need someone to talk to,” Segal says. “Someone who will truly listen and provide the space for support, validation and exploration.”

Organisationally, leaders need to establish and build upon a culture of engagement, collaboration and trust. The kind that can only be compelled through true active listening so that employees feel heard, valued and supported in a way that impedes burnout. In turn, business and industry will realize an array of benefits, from increased productivity and higher staff retention rates to lower absenteeism and presenteeism exemplified by the ‘quiet quitting’ trend. Employee angst, stress and burnout is a significant business problem. One highly viable solution lies in the simple yet impactful act of active listening. By committing to this learned and nuanced skill, leaders can readily address the root causes of these issues and ultimately facilitate a potent culture of caring. Executives will quickly see the ripple effects as these improvements drive employee satisfaction and revenue growth.

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Written By

Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, business, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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