Causes and Prevention in Human Service Worker- Explain burnout, causes of burnout, methods to prevent burnout, personal reaction

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Causes and Prevention of Burnout in Human Services Staff Paper

Causes and Prevention of Burnout in Human Services Staff Paper

Jamie Cook-Martin


April 7, 2014

Dr. Suzanne Fraser

Today's organizationally competitive market is learning that there is an increased need for high commitment and low levels of burnout in order to achieve the organization's vision and mission while fostering low employee turnover and higher employee satisfaction. Employer's need to improve in areas such as, identifying factors and methods that cause burnout, and having managers take a proactive role to assist in prevention of burnout. The individual (employee), can take control of personal and work-related stressors by building coping skills to prevent burnout.


Daum, (2006) states, in an article written on "Burnout: Are you managing it or is it managing you," burnout is defined as a total depletion of one's energetic resources. From a psychological understanding burnout is caused when people experience emotional exhaustion, physical fatigue, and cognitive weariness simultaneously.

Once the psychological conditions become chronic the burnout will lead to depersonalization with the person doing minimum output Daum (2014). In the final phase of burnout the person experiences overwhelming worthlessness affecting the person's dignity, spirit, and will Daum (2006). When this occurs human service workers have a dehumanizing, uncaring attitude toward clients Lewis, Packard & Lewis (2007). An individual's personality and perceived constraints in the work environment will affect their experiences of burnout. Factors such as dysfunctional relationships within the job, expectations, and job dissatisfaction all increase the chances of an employee experiencing burnout. Burnout will affect the employee's productivity within the organization as well as the organization's high turnover rates and low productivity.

Factors That Cause Burnout

Herber Freudenberger proposed in the text of Lewis, Packard & Lewis (2007) that burnout is an occupational disease. The...