29/October/2021

Burnout & Stress – An insider view

Every industry has other side, which always has more challenges & stories hidden from the world; sometimes goes unnoticed. At times, it is always debated what comes first or what to notice? Is it common at large organisations or medium and small-sized organisations that are only at risk?

Ideally, stress is the step towards burnout. It doesn’t reach burnout level in a day or month. Possibly it takes years for many professionals and gets visible only around mid-thirties and early forties.

Yes, everybody goes through stress! That is how our work culture has been since 2000. The last 20 years went through lot of changes – socially, technically, and professionally. Company targets, individual targets, client expectations, deadline, TAT, late night deliveries, and what not have been affected. But people don’t believe it until it happens to their near and dear ones.

This reminds me of one of my engineering batch mates who lost his life due to a heart attack. He was working in a software company. He was just 32. Yes, 32 years only! In some countries, life starts at 30, and here, we are ending up on the race before we start.

Stress, at times, is good & inters as breeze, but we must handle it carefully before it becomes a cyclone or tornado. We must identify how our body is responding to stress? Are you in honeymoon phase or at the chronic level? Every individual or race has different response rate to stress. So, we must observe. Our body gives lots of hints like

  • Anxiety
  • Blood pressure
  • Pre-diabetic
  • Weight gain
  • Anger & behaviour changes
  • Losing passion
  • Loss of sleep etc.

In my view, burnout is a non-physical end of self. As suicide means ending your life, burnout starts eating you from inside, and you start with –

  • Extreme exhaustion
  • Lost passion/hobbies
  • Depression
  • Mental collapse
  • Absconding
  • Addiction with denial, etc.

Countries like Japan don’t discuss stress; thus, their suicide rate is the highest. On the other hand, Western culture openly discusses stress and work pressure. However still, suicide and burnout exist.

What can we do?

It’s hard to digest, but the truth is none of us have 100 % solution. Most of the solutions are focussed once you are inside the battlefield. Nobody focuses on how to prepare for the coming. Many organisations have tried or are trying for 18 months or more, but many SMEs/MSMEs are yet to start.

In my view, solutions lie in gradual healing and parallel checks right from the day an employee joins the company –

  • Parrel checks from onboarding
  • Understanding the employee’s mindset
  • Closely working with employees
  • Planning deadlines/TAT
  • Doing the right resource planning
  • Determining the career path & progression
  • Encouraging hobbies
  • Designing the right engagement framework
  • Motivational perks & benefits

The more you understand the employee and help them connect with the organisation goals and philosophy, the more value they will bring to the system.

Burnout & Stress – An insider view Created By
Dibya Gyan Murti

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