Burnout is real and getting worse. The numbers are discouraging, for both men and women: 42% of women and 35% of men have felt burned out in the last few months (up from 32% and 28% respectively last year).  Furthermore, 33% of women are considering downshifting their careers or leaving the workforce altogether.

This recent Harvard Business Review article on burnout in women summarizes the research data that despite their own increasing levels of burnout “women are much more likely than men to take action to fight it, for example by managing workloads of their teams, supporting diversity equity and inclusion efforts, and simply checking in on how employees are doing.”

“When managers actively managed the workload of their team, their staff were 32% less likely to be burned out and 33% less likely to leave. However, companies are not recognizing or incentivizing this work — meaning they risk losing the very leaders they need right now.”

The authors recommend 3 simple company actions to really make a difference and improve the situation:

1)    Set company-wide norms.

2)     Equip managers with the training and resources to lead.

3)     Normally recognize the work managers do to support employees.

“Women are caught in a Catch-22 when it comes to burnout at work: They suffer it more and also do more to combat it.” Managers are in the best position to spot and address burnout, but senior leadership has a role to play too, by establishing norms, empowering managers and recognizing their efforts. With this companies can catch an elusive win-win: creating a better workplace and helping women at the same time.”

Now more than ever, as the pandemic stretches on, having strategies to recognize burnout and cope with it is fundamental.  Leverage your network in and out of the workplace to seek help and support others.