Causes and Prevention of Burnout in Human Services Staff

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Causes and Prevention of Burnout in Human Services Staff
Jamie Turner
BSHS 462-Building Community in Organizations
February 28, 2011

Causes and Prevention of Burnout in Human Services Staff
Burnout amongst human services staff is an issue that could take a toll on a person health. It can also be big concern within the agency. Human service worker job can be overwhelming and stressful, especially when dealing with heavy caseloads, forced to work overtime, being on call after hours, and trying to balance a schedule between work and home. I will define burnout and describe some of the individual, cultural, organizational, supervisory, and social support factors that cause burnout. I will discuss various individual, job role, and organizational methods to prevent burnout. I will examine my own personality and share how I may react and respond to personal and work-related stress, and how to reduce the effects of burnout. Lastly, I will discuss what to do as a human service manager to be alert and ready to assist with staff burnout.
Burnout
Burnout is a state of exhaustion, whether it is physical, mental, or emotional, which is cause by excessive and tedious stress (Lewis, Packard, & Lewis, 2007). Burnout has three major factors: “emotional exhaustion, feelings of low personal accomplishment with clients, and a sense of depersonalization feelings” (Lewis, Packard, & Lewis, 2007).
Individual, Cultural, Organizational, Supervisory, and Social Support Factors that Cause Burnout
Burnout has a serious effect on human service staff, clients, and organization. According to the text possible causes of burnout may be: (Lewis, Packard, & Lewis, 2007)
1. Individual- Personality factors
2. Cultural- Policies that are not for employees’ with different cultural beliefs
3. Organizational- Low motivation and excessive amount of conflict…...

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