At Grace Papers, we’ve talked a lot about the Great Resignation and what companies can do to prevent mass exodus resignations, particularly from talented women in the workforce.
But coming into the holidays, we’re getting more data and feedback from our members that exhaustion is the kicker that is causing them to reprioritise their careers and work-life balance.
McKinsey and LeanIn.org’s latest “Women in the Workplace Report” reports that 42% of women and 35% of men in Corporate America have felt burned out in the last few months (up from 32% and 28% respectively last year).
From our work and data-led research with some of the world’s smartest businesses, we know that many are offering more flexibility and work from home — which is a positive result of lockdowns.
But such flexibility also requires boundaries for employees to know when to hit the ‘off switch’ and managers need help to support them to do this.
1) Take some of the pressure off managers and create company-wide working norms to encourage flexible work. Grace Papers members have told us how much they value the greater flexibility of remote work, but they need protocols and accountabilities to be clearly communicated to know what’s expected and when and avoid the grudges. And they need to know it’s ok to switch off.
Look at our FlexLeadership Lab for ways to help your managers learn how to create a culture that embraces flexible work, through their own leadership.
2) Equip managers with the tools and training they need to lead. If burnout carries a stigma, employees won’t talk about it and it can’t be addressed. But utilise the Flex Leadership Lab to lean into the issue by raising awareness and work out ways to combat it as a workplace issue, not an individual’s problem.
3) Formally recognise leadership efforts to tackle burnout and exhaustion by making managers’ support of their employees part of their performance reviews. Acknowledge your managers who Lead with Grace and the role they play in company culture.