Did you know that less than half of employers consider preventing employee burnout a top priority for their business? Only 41% of respondents in a new survey by The Workforce Institute at Kronos Inc. called "Engaging Opportunity: Working Your Way" showed concern for how their business prioritizes employee well-being. We'd love to see just how these companies compare in employee engagement levels with those who don't! For the other 59%, the lack of concern should be a warning that their practices may be a little old-fashioned for this day and age and prone to creating employee burnout. This should be a major concern for businesses, since a whopping 29% of employees expressed nearing a state of burnout. Survey responses by employees reveal a lot about the policies and decisions that create tension and challenge their productivity.
Sick Days Happen — Don't Reject Them
No one actually wants to be sick, and no one else wants to catch what illness someone else might have. Still, a surprising 16% of employees who experienced time off rejections had sick days specifically denied and another 22% for their personal days. In businesses where all PTO gets combined, the line gets blurry.
This pressure to work by managers draws focus away from individual wellness, which can cause greater concern throughout an employee base. These decisions might be perceived as distrustful toward employees choosing a day to recover over piling on new risks to the day and putting their team at risk. If recovery and preventing the spread of illness is enough to keep someone home, managers may also be smart to encourage against even working from home during that time, a current trend, instilling concern and building trust.
Unload the Workload
A lot of this unease toward making time off requests, even for vacations planned well in advance, comes down to workload. Around 11% of employees surveyed across Canada, the U.K. and the U.S. hadn't even made a time off request in the last year. Not enforcing vacation time on a structural level encourages workaholic and burnout tendencies.
Hold Your Managers Accountable
Sure, they're the decision makers whether time off gets approved, but they're also the people who should be in tune with their team to know when to give them a break. Nearly half of employees place direct blame on their manager when their request gets rejected, and almost a third believe their managers don't even care if they burn out. Nearly a third were frustrated by the time it took for their managers to make a decision—a problem that could be caused by outdated workforce management systems lacking in mobility.