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Burnout linked to performance management

The increasingly close policing of work and the pressure to perform is creating a generation of burnout victims, experts have warned.      

Online publication Equal Times reports almost one worker in ten is at risk of burnout. In some professions, the numbers affected are as high as 40 per cent.

"It is often the people most devoted to their work that suffer from burnout," explained Dr Patrick Mesters, director of the European Institute for Intervention and Research on Burnout (EIIRBO) in Brussels.

"Burnout deprives companies of their best employees. And it's not at all surprising."

The symptoms of burnout are similar to those of depression: persistent physical and emotional exhaustion, aggressive behaviour.

What differentiates it, however, is the fact that all the symptoms are caused by the person's working environment – a universe that has evolved considerably in recent decades, to the extent that it promotes physical and emotional exhaustion.

"Many factors can lead to burnout," continued Dr Mesters. "They, of course, include overwork and the imbalance between work and personal life. But many people also complain about work losing its meaning and a lack of recognition from their colleagues and superiors. The individual feels increasingly isolated in his or her work. This can lead to feelings of overload and loss of control."

According to Equal Times: "The way the working environment is organised appears to be a major factor in the development of burnout. It is an environment that is increasingly dehumanised and pressurised, an environment that is increasingly taking over people's personal lives."

Sound familiar? Find out more in Burnout: the flip side of the cult of performance Equal Times; European Institute for Intervention and Research on Burn Out.

Source: VTHC OHS Reps SafetyNetJournal.



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