If I could avoid IT burnout, I would. It creeps up on you and before you know it, you don’t want anything to do with IT or technology. So how do you avoid IT burnout? Some think it may be the new normal. I don’t. I follow these 3 simple steps to avoid IT burnout with myself, and my staff.
- Track Time – This is important so that you know when your staff is working too many hours, and their days are too long. I have often “heard through the grapevine” that some of my staff worked an entire weekend. Had I not overheard, I would never know. Tracking time also helps me know if I have enough resources. If I see my staff working over 40 hours per week, it is a very clear sign that I need to hire more help. It also helps me prioritize things so I can assist with time management, and make sure engineers are not in over their heads, which creates an enormous amount of stress.
- Support Vacations – I am definitely a proponent of vacation time, and refuse to call my engineers when they are off work. Vacation time and family time are sacred and it needs to be respected. Just about every staff member I have will say “just call me if you need me”, but I refuse to do that. Even when I had a business partner/co-owner of the company I would not call them while on vacation. Also, if my staff does not take a vacation, I will force them. I never offer to buy days back, or discourage any vacation time. I try to make it work around the holidays so everyone has good quality family time.
- Appreciate your Staff – Which I do. When I leave each night, I truly thank them for their hard work. It is no secret a company could not exist without each and every staff member that supports it. I try to buy lunch, offer afternoons off (when quiet in the office) and I occasionally hand out gift cards. In truth, I can’t do enough for them. I believe my staff knows how much I appreciate them and that is because I tell them, and I make sure they know how valuable they are.
No one can ever avoid IT burnout, but we can certainly try to minimize it. Yes, your job is important, but it’s also very important that you are happy at your job. I never want anyone to work for Tier3MD and say they hate their jobs. Because I enjoy my job so much, I want to make sure they do as well. After all, isn’t that what life is all about?
Sheryl Cherico, CEO