If this is the case, it’s important to look at the leadership strategies in place and assess whether they’re healthy and productive for the staff and for the business.
The mentality of ‘working harder, not smarter’ has been instilled into our thinking from when we were very young. Now we know that it’s not necessarily about how many hours you’re glued to your desk, but the quality of work you produce.
Every individual is unique and responds differently to tactics or strategies in the workplace. Leaders need to understand that as no two people are the same, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach that can help everyone achieve high performance. People have different strengths, attention spans and abilities that should all be considered when implementing certain workplace structures.
The idea of leadership used to focus on ‘how to motivate others’, but these days it’s more about ‘how do you coach others to motivate themselves without getting burnt out’. Businesses have put more pressure on individuals to work autonomously but they haven’t changed the leadership styles to suit this. So how do we go about this?
There are three steps you can take.
Lead by example:
The first step is for leaders to acknowledge that one of the reasons their teams may be experiencing stress and burnout is due to the leadership style.
Those higher up in the company need to lead by example and make sure staff don’t feel guilty for following in their footsteps. If you want your team to be healthy and more productive, encourage them to do something to energise themselves – whether it’s eating lunch outside, away from the computer, working from home in the morning or going to a lunchtime yoga class.
Start by implementing this into your daily routine and encourage your staff to do the same.
Manage energy, not time
Following on from this is another important step – teaching your team to manage their energy, not their time. To do this, it’s key to understand what your personal pace is and plan your day around this. If you’re a morning person and are energised at this time of the day, plan your heavier tasks during this period.
If you have more energy after lunch or in the afternoon, schedule your heavy tasks then. Plan your to-do list according to your energy and you’ll be able to get through a lot more.
Engage a coach
If this doesn’t come naturally to you as a leader, and you need help implementing particular strategies, it’s important to seek help from other areas of your organisation for support or from high performance coaches who can come into the workplace and help.