The Causes of Employee Burnout

Yesterday we went over some of the signs of employee burnout so today I’d like to continue by talking about some of the actual causes.

Employee burnout can happen to anyone regardless of age, gender, ethnicity and occupation. Studies do show that people who work with the public (such as customer service professionals) are more likely than others to experience burnout. People who constantly feel as though they work too hard for too little money are more likely to experience burnout as well.

The causes of burnout vary from person to person but I found it interesting that while it is sometimes caused by the workplace, some people may lead themselves down that path on their own. Here are some of the main causes:

  • Some people have unrealistic goals. They may set them for themselves or their managers and coworkers may set them.
  • People who feel as if they have no control over their situations often burn out. They often have no say when it comes to setting their work hours or placing limits on the amount of work they can complete in a day.
  • Jobs that conflict with an individual’s personal morals or ethics may cause burnout.
  • Individuals who are bored by their work are easily burnt out.
  • Workers who aren’t given proper resources or who are not given clear instructions when handed a project often become burnt out.
  • Working with a team of people who are grumpy, rude, bullying, or controlling will cause burnout.

There are dozens of reasons an employee might become burnt out. Some are related to work alone while others are a combination of work and personal issues. As a manager it is your job to recognise the causes and make changes before it’s too late.

Thanks again,


Sean McPheat

Managing Director

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