—Barbara Moy, SHRM-CP, director, people operations, Nexonia,
Encourage employees to use their allotted vacation time. Run a report every
year to ensure there aren’t any excessive
balances. Offer mental health services,
such as a robust employee assistance
program. Add activities during company hours, such as a weekly social,
that give employees a reason to leave
their desks. Encourage managers to
have discussions that address work/life
Kill Arbitrary Rules
Don’t force all employees to come in at
the same time. Some individuals work
best at 8 a.m., while others are most
productive at 10 a.m. If your operation
allows for flexible scheduling, implement it right away! Make use of telecom-muting. If workers can get reports done
from the comfort of their homes (
perhaps in their pj’s), don’t force them to
battle traffic every day and come into the
office in a business suit.
Consider automating repetitive tasks
so that your employees can focus on the
Our managers who schedule our traveling technicians all started as techs themselves. They understand the demands of
the job and keep the lines of communication open with their teams. It comes
down to them knowing when someone
is struggling because he or she has been
on the road too much or has had a rough
patch dealing with demanding customers or repairs. That open dialogue allows
the managers to schedule the techs a
quiet week or give them an extra day in
the office to decompress.
We might also bring them into HQ to
meet with managers and other techs and
interact with their colleagues.
—David Alice, HR generalist, MC
Make the Little
Machinery Systems Inc., Elk Grove Vil-
responsibilities that are most important
and worthwhile. Finally, create a culture
of transparency and trust. Motivate your
employees to participate in organiza-
tional decision-making, and keep them
informed of changes that affect their jobs.
—Jennifer Diaz, SHRM-CP, director
of HR, World Evolve Inc., Miami
Make all employees, from the janitor to the CEO, feel they belong and
are an important part of your company. We have done small things that
are making big changes to decrease
burnout and boost retention in our
manufacturing plant. On the third
week of every month, we celebrate all
our hourly workers’ birthdays for that
month by providing them with lunch.
We allow them to vote on the type of
food we order. We make sure all the
professional staff is present. No exceptions! We sing “Happy Birthday,” and
we sit down to eat with our employees.
We walk the manufacturing floor
often and visit the employee break
room. We try to be approachable and
to address employee matters quickly
—Pablo Pineda, HR manager,
Smithfield Foods, San Jose, Calif.
Don’t Add Stress
Include your team members in any
decisions that are relevant to their
work. Ignoring employees when making important choices relating to their
assignments will negatively affect their
commitment and will certainly lead to
burnout. And don’t create stress by adding new assignments when workers are
in the middle of a project.
—Mohammad Qais Momand, chief
corporate services officer, Vision Financial Services, Kabul, Afghanistan
Length of the average
workweek for full-time
1 in 5
60-plus hours a week.
vacation days went unused
of employees ended 2016 with
unused vacation days.
of employees miss
three to six days of
work each year due to
Top Reasons For
By HR Leaders
Too much overtime
No connection between the
role and corporate strategy
Sources: Kronos Inc. and Future Workplace, 2016; 2016 ComPsych StressPulse report; Gallup Inc., 2014; Oxford Economics, 2017.