Topic of the Week Burned Out at Work
- I know what is expected of me at work.
- I have the materials and equipment to do my job.
- At work, I have the opportunity to do my best every day.
- In the last seven days, I have received recognition or praise for doing good work.
- My supervisor, or someone, seems to care about me as a person. There is someone at work who cares about my development.
- At work, my opinions seem to count.
- The mission or purpose of my company makes me feel important.
- My associates or fellow employees are committed to doing a good job.
- I have a best friend at work.
- In the last six months someone has talked to me about my progress.
- This last year I have had opportunities to learn and grow.
Gallup recently reported that 70% of us have checked out from our jobs, with almost one-in-five not only checked out themselves, but they actively make it tougher for others to do their jobs. I call these people the speed bumps of the workplace. Are you checked-in or checked-out at work? Which reminds me of a cartoon by Robert Mankoff, cartoon editor of the New Yorker, which was in my first book. It's a guy standing in front of his boss's desk. "Burned out Parker? I wasn't even aware that you'd caught fire."
This time I'm going to give you some insight about how to tell if you're burned out, using the twelve questions that came out of Gallup's survey of 25 million people. Next time, I'll suggest practical strategies for coping with your own burnout.
- I know what is expected of me at work. How can you feel satisfied at work if you don't know what is expected of you?
- I have the materials and equipment to do my job. Is there anything more frustrating than going to work each day tap dancing because you don't have what you need to get the job done?
- At work, I have the opportunity to do my best every day. Managers often complain about employee's lack of pride about work. The crazy part is that it's often those same managers who hold people back from doing great work.
- In the last seven days, I have received recognition or praise for doing good work. It never ceases to amaze me how important an atta-boy or atta-woman can be at work and how unusual it is for most people to get it.
- My supervisor, or someone, seems to care about me as a person.Again, this doesn't cost a dime and yet it seldom happens.
- There is someone at work who cares about my development.Engagement is a two way street, its easier to stay engaged if people care about you.
- At work, my opinions seem to count. People don't need to always get their way, but they almost always need to be heard.
- The mission or purpose of my company makes me feel important.This was the most interesting finding for me of the latest survey. Only 41% of people knew what their company's purpose was. Ouch.
- My associates or fellow employees are committed to doing a good job. This is the problem when companies allow an employee to slack off. It can often let the air out of everyone else's tires too.
- I have a best friend at work. This is really about trust, having someone that you really trust greatly increases your engagement at work.
- In the last six months someone has talked to me about my progress. And this last year I have had opportunities to learn and grow. Feedback and opportunities are key variables to checking in at work.
If you're now feeling really burned out I'll be back next week with tips for catching fire at work.
Bob Rosner is a best-selling author and award-winning journalist. For free job and work advice, check out the award-winning workplace911.com. Check the revised edition of his Wall Street Journal best seller, "The Boss's Survival Guide." If you have a question for Bob, contact him firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thought of the Week
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."
Weekly Comic by Jerry King
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