CIOIT Staff & Team Building

6 Ways to Keep Your IT Staff Engaged and Enthusiastic

As IT becomes an increasingly integral part of the business world, burnout of IT staff has become a major issue. In a study of 614 HR leaders, 95% said that burnout has hurt employee retention. It’s clear that IT workers are stressed out, and no Twenty-One Pilots song is going to make them feel any better about it. But in her article for Computerworld, Mary K. Pratt gives six ways to keep burnout from wiping out your team:

  • Watch the clock.
  • Set realistic goals.
  • Empower your people.
  • Stop the daily grind.
  • Create a positive culture.
  • Change course when necessary.

Extinguishing Burnout in IT

One of the major problems of managing a team of very driven people is that they like to see a project through to completion at any cost. But working nonstop on a project is a one-way ticket to burnout. So keep your staff in check by watching workloads and give them incentive to take some time off to unwind. With that in mind, shaking up the daily grind can be very useful to your workers. Giving them a chance to work on other problems and projects pertinent to the company can be a great way to reduce the monotony of the daily routine. Giving your employees time to learn new skills throughout the day will also give them a chance to pursue interests that could help them professionally, and reinvigorate their interest in other areas of their work.

Pratt cites Teresa Wynn, senior vice president for the office of the CIO at Quicken Loans, for an example of how to structure these growth opportunities:

Wynn says the IT executives and managers at Quicken Loans strive to empower tech pros by creating a culture that allows them to take charge. Management principles, such as giving workers a degree of freedom and support to pursue their own ideas when tackling projects, as well as formal programs like Bullet Time, a weekly four-hour period when IT team members can work on projects of their own choosing, help achieve that goal, she says.

This means of empowering your employees will keep them motivated and help create a better atmosphere to work in. A positive work culture is a key part of decreasing burnout because it means that your employees won’t be feeling as much of the daily toll as before. But ultimately, knowing when to change the course of things so your employees won’t feel like they are just going through the motions is key to avoiding burnout. This being understanding and flexible shows that you are aware of how stressful their positions can be and that you are taking steps to decrease that.

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