At some point or another, you've been so tired you can't think clearly. You hurry through your activities and make decisions based on what's fastest.
Now imagine what happens when your employees reach burn-out point and they're too tired to think clearly.
A PhD student from England recently carried out a test that showed burnt-out employees are more likely to make irrational decisions.
Irrational decisions mean unsafe ones.
Now ask yourself, would you trust a burnt-out employee to work safely?
The answer should always be 'no'. That's why you must look out for these five warning signs of a burnt-out employees...
Look for these five warning signs of burnt-out employees
1. Constant tiredness
If your employee only ever looks tired it could be because of complete burn-out. In his case, constant stress and work long hours may have taken their toll on your employee leaving him all drained of any energy.
2. Being demotivated
If your employee looks and acts demotivated, it's probably because he's burnt-out. Classic signs of this are arriving late to work or taking a long time to do things.
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3. Negative emotions
If your employee seems frustrated, angry, sad, cynical or generally depressed, it could be a result of the burn-out. This is because constant stress and tiredness take a toll on emotional wellbeing as well.
Watch out for employees that always answer 'I'm just tired' if you ask them if they're okay. This could suggest they're experiencing negative emotions but feel they can't talk to you about it.
4. Poor concentration
If you can see your employee struggles to concentrate, it's a sign of burn-out. They also won't have the energy to focus and they would rather think about anything but work.
5. Drops in productivity
If your employee becomes less and less productive, this is a clear sign of burn-out. The negative emotions, tiredness and poor concentration make it difficult for your employee to perform.
If this sums up someone on your team, here's what should you do about it…
Here's how to deal with burnt-out employees
The first thing you need to do is speak to your employee privately. Make him feel safe enough to talk to you about what's going on.
Then offer to send him to counselling so he can get help and get back on track. It's very important to help your employees deal with the stress of work and this is one of the best ways to do that.
Lastly, change your employee's work duties for a while so he doesn't have to work in very dangerous situations. Make sure you get your employee's permission to do this first though.
This will reduce the chance of your employee acting irrationally and dangerously.
Remember, it's as much your duty to protect your employees' emotional and mental health and as it is to protect their physical health. Do so by watching out for burnt-out employees and helping them.