When your job not only doesn’t bring you joy anymore but also is the cause of frustration and makes you feel unappreciated, there is a risk that you are suffering from burnout. This condition leads to a sense of hopelessness and a lack of appreciation for any achievements at work.

WHO (World Health Organisation) recognised burnout as an issue of medical nature

Nowadays, during the pandemic, many people experience low mood and energy loss. The necessity to work from home means that we have less contact with coworkers, and additionally blurs the boundaries between professional and private life. All these factors can lead to dissatisfaction at work or even to burnout. Read below, how to recognize the first symptoms of burnout and follow our methods to avoid it during your work.

The symptoms of burnout

Burnout – how to avoid it? – Burnout – the symptoms

Exhaustion, decreased productivity, lower efficiency, and cynicism are all symptoms of burnout.

When these are identified by a physician, starting January the 1st 2022, doctors will be allowed to diagnose burnout and write a sick leave.

At WEBSENSA, we realise the significance of this issue. Burnout touches an increasing number of people, but we try our hardest to stay away from this problem.

How to avoid burnout at work? Our methods include:

1. We are creative

For the job to be fulfilling, we need to be enthusiastic about it. To make sure our team won’t lose enthusiasm for work, we create an environment that encourages creative thinking.

Professional development days

Burnout – how to avoid it? – 1. We are creative

When we were still working stationary in the office, we’ve been committing one day a week to work at non-commercial projects. The purpose was to provide everybody on the team with an opportunity to create something 100% of their own and work outside of their area of expertise. They could lead the entire process according to their preferences: starting from brainstorming for ideas, choosing people for the team, to the last steps of finalising their project.

Now, during the pandemic and remote work, we had to change the form of these activities. We continue in online form our traditional Friday development meetings, called eLWiRAKnowledge & Development Laboratory (from polish). They are aimed at the exchange of knowledge between our employees – everyone has the opportunity to present their skills and interests related to their professional work.

Integration meetings

We partake in original and engaging workshops that encourage creativity. For example, we held improvisation workshops twice at our office, which allowed us to let loose of our imagination and simply have fun. Currently, when the situation doesn’t allow us to meet in a larger group, we organize entertaining online meetings for our employees. On our #OnlineWednesdays we have contests with awards and play online games together. Even such contact is important these days – it’s an opportunity for us to talk about topics other than work.

Versatile projects & technologies

We are versatile in our work, which means that we have contact with different people, work on varied projects, and encounter diverse problems. The range of responsibilities is also extensive and increases with time, which assures us that we won’t fall into boring routines. Our employees have a chance to work not only in external, but also in our internal and non-commercial projects. These are not commissioned by any client, so our team has a bigger influence on their course and final shape.

2. We focus on improvement and development 

Burnout – how to avoid it? – 2. We focus on improvement and development

We put a significant emphasis on the self-development of our employees. We want each team member to continually improve and increase the range of their knowledge and abilities. Before mentioned, non-commercial projects, provide the employees with an opportunity to try themselves in a field they’ve never worked in, thus gaining new skills and experience throughout the process. 

To avoid the situation of feeling ‘stuck’, we hold development meetings each quarter for every team member. These meetings provide us with a ground to analyse current work and achievements and to talk about the employee’s perspective. We identify their short and long-term goals, aspirations, ally any doubts, and together we rate the overall performance according to the defined expectations. 

3. We have flexible working hours 

Burnout – how to avoid it?– 3. We have flexible working hours

The outcome is much more valuable than the time you spend in the office. That’s why employees decide how long, when, and where they are working. In such a decision, they must take into consideration that the project must be completed in time and up to our standards.

Deciding about our own working hours keeps us far away from problems like lack of sleep and disrupted work-life balance. What’s more, some of our employees are students, so flexible working hours make it easier for them to combine studies with work.

4. We have autonomy at work

Burnout – how to avoid it? Our methods at WEBSENSA – 4. We have autonomy at work

Everybody working for WEBSENSA has extensive autonomy in their way of work. As mentioned before, our working hours are flexible, and so is the place of work. However, this idea goes beyond time and place.

We are staying away from the concept of micro-management. This idea is not only a waste of time for people who would supervise but also puts limits on the means of work for the supervised. Due to that, right after starting to work for WEBSENSA, employees are independent and self-reliant.

Employees are always welcomed to show initiative and suggest new innovative ideas

5. We fear boredom & are constantly looking for new solutions

Burnout – how to avoid it? – 5. We fear boredom & are constantly looking for new solutions

We take on diverse and ambitious projects. All our means of work are in the technological avant- garde, and projects are from various fields. We use new technologies and avoid old ones even if they are known and considered ‘safe’ because we want to create opportunities to find more effective means of work. 

Our means of work are in the technological avant-garde

Apart from our regular projects for clients, we work on our own projects that are only limited by our imagination. Currently, a team of our employees is working on an app imitating bullet-time photography, called Freeeze. Also, we’re constantly making improvements in our already working time tracking and timesheet app – TimesheetKiller. By working on interesting and challenging projects and creating our own, we avoid monotony at work.

Summary

Burnout decreases productivity and work efficiency of employees and hurts the enterprise itself, as a company is the people in it. What’s even worse, burnout can lead to tragic health consequences. Due to these reasons, creating a friendly work environment supports personal development, encourages creativity, and awakens enthusiasm. And at WEBSENSA, willingness to work is a necessity for us.

These actions are extremely important now, when many employees experience the negative consequences of pandemic, restrictions and remote work. The ongoing situation requires from the management teams slightly different approach to their employees. Being a good leader in the workplace during a crisis requires special abilities and ventures. You can read about it in this article.