This is the fourth in our series on case manager stress relief. In the first post, we discussed the physical things that can be done to relieve stress. The second focused on ways to find mental stress relief and the third focused on identifying and lessening exhaustion factors. In this post, we will examine how case manager burnout can be prevented with good supervision and mentorship.
A review on burnout
For case managers, burnout is something that can be all too familiar due to the constant amount of stress that comes along with the job. The signs of burnout include:
- Chronic fatigue
- Forgetfulness/impaired concentration and attention
- Physical symptoms
- Increased illness
- Loss of appetite
Those experiencing burnout can feel exhausted both emotionally and physically, cynicism and detachment, feelings of ineffectiveness and lack of accomplishment. This is when you need to find a way to provide good case manager stress relief.
Good supervision can help prevent burnout
A healthy work environment begins with the supervisor, as they are the ones who help establish the work culture and habits in the office. It’s about relationship building and making sure the case managers feel comfortable coming to their supervisors if help is needed. By successfully building a relationship with the case managers, a supervisor can make sure they are getting the time off and support they need, which can help prevent burnout.
It's important to make sure that employees are not expecting too much of themselves, are not feeling inadequate or incompetent, know that their work is valued, do not have unreasonable demands on them and are in roles that are the right fit for them. If one of your case managers suddenly develops a bad attitude or drop in performance, that could be a sign of burnout.
Stress relief from mentorship
Having a solid mentorship program or mentoring opportunities available in the workplace can serve as a form of case manager stress relief. Mentorship continues on the thought of relationship building, which can be a great way of identifying burnout or potential burnout factors. Simply having someone to talk to and relate with can provide much-needed stress relief. A mentor can provide helpful insights on situations a case manager may be experiencing as well as wisdom on how to handle stressful occurrences.
Case managers deal with high levels of stress on a daily basis, which can result in suffering from burnout if not properly handled. Fortunately, supervisors can establish open communication channels, such as mentorship, to help prevent case managers from reaching burnout status.