Is employee burnout hurting your business?

Following the last few years of struggling to remain open, pivoting their business models, handling supply chain delays, tackling labour shortages, and managing food inflation, it’s safe to say that many in the foodservice industry are experiencing burnout.

Despite adding 74,000 foodservice jobs in the summer of 2022, 65 per cent of operators report still not having enough staff to meet customer demand, as many restaurants remain understaffed and overworked.

Lead your team by prioritizing your employees to minimize burnout as much as you can.

Family first

Your staff is the heart of your business and treating them like family will let them know they’re valued. In a recent survey, 26 per cent of burnt-out workers said that a more supportive manager would help manage their burnout. 

Talk with each employee to get a sense of how they are feeling, what they need, and how you can help them perform at their best. Consider hosting team dinners, training, or events to boost morale and strengthen the bond that keeps you all working towards the same goal.

RELATED: How to communicate effectively with your employees

Work-life balance

Consider work-life balance, too. Can you accommodate your staff’s needs when they request time off? How can you better schedule your team so they can maximize their downtime? Happy, motivated employees are productive employees, so it’s in their best interest – and yours – to make balance a priority.  

If you are still not at full capacity, consider adjusting your hours to help lower your costs, while offering your staff a little time away from work.

Wellness checks

Many companies are investing in wellness programs for their employees. For example, Wendy’s is adopting programming to train managers to become more sensitive to employee mental health struggles, and Chick-fil-A has adopted a program that provides employees with a wellness coach.

As the foodservice industry continues to evolve, taking care of our own has become paramount to the success of our businesses. As Sylvain Charlebois, food industry expert and senior director at the Agri-Food Analytics Lab at Dalhousie University recently said “The pandemic has brought a new dimension of consideration to the workforce, and it’s becoming vitally important that employers understand the challenges faced today are not just about a disrupted supply chain or inflation. It’s also very much about the people that they rely on to achieve success.”