A Swiss study suggests that to prevent burnout, a combination of individual and organisational interventions is the most effective strategy.
Burnout often starts with emotional exhaustion caused by work stress, leading to cynicism and disengagement. Preventing exhaustion can help avoid burnout symptoms that have a negative impact our health.
Typically, three types of interventions are used to prevent burnout: individual (requiring workers to protect themselves), organisational (making structural changes to systems of work) and combined (a combination of the two).
Researchers analysed 13 different studies and found that combined interventions were the most effective in reducing exhaustion, followed by interventions targeting workload and participatory interventions.
Surprisingly, the researchers concluded interventions targeting work schedule had no effect on exhaustion.
The researchers conclude workload interventions are effective because they help balance job demands and resources. Participatory interventions empower employees to develop and implement their own solutions, increasing their sense of control and motivation.
Overall, they recommend that employers provide extra resources, training, and information to prevent emotional exhaustion and occupational burnout.