It is good to be passionate about what you do. To immerse yourself in a project and see it through to the end. But, it is not good to obsess about your work, even if you love what you do.
Most people will engage in their work by committing to a goal and ensuring they meet the required quality standard. But pushing yourself to constantly achieve in this way can cause stress and will ultimately lead to burnout. This can happen to anyone, even if they are passionate about the work they do.
Recent research from the Yale Center For Emotional Intelligence has proven that as many as 1 in 5 people who love their job are still burnt out and exhausted.
But why is this? Let’s explore now.
Burnout Despite The Best Intentions
The research surveyed many busy professionals to explore the relationship they had with their job and the resulting stress levels. The resounding results displayed that the more engaged people felt with their job, the more chance they had of having higher stress levels.
So there is such a thing as being too dedicated. That is when it can start to affect your health and mental wellbeing. It is also when you start to consider if your job is worth all the stress and worry. Would you potentially be better off in a different role? Those that weren’t as engaged in their jobs had far lower stress levels.
This is a terrible predicament for employers. Many of their dedicated and hardworking employees could end up leaving the business due to the burnout factor. Then the company would only be left with the workers that aren’t as engaged. It could mean a drop in productivity and the quality of output if these workers are not as committed to success.
What Employers Can Do
Unfortunately, this is not the kind of stress that can be corrected with a morale-boosting fruit basket and an early finish on Friday. Wellness initiatives can help, but they will not cure the root of the stress problem. That takes a deeper examination of employer expectations.
To fix the issue of burnout, employers must overhaul their team’s working environment. An employee requires the right resources and the right attitude of support from management, without the influence of stress. That means they need the time, tools and funds allocated to allow them to complete their job fully. They also require empathy, kindness and a positive team attitude. This can be further supported by an incentive scheme and recognition for the work they do.
This positive environment will ensure that the demands on each employee are not too high. They will not feel a need to achieve goals that are near impossible to reach. Instead, they will be able to create a real work/life balance. This balance will allow them to thrive at their job.
So if you want to retain your most dedicated employees, you need to create an environment that they will want to stay in. Remember that happy employees are productive employees. Stressed and exhausted employees are not.