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Friday, January 27, 2023

Jacinda Ardern’s Resignation Is A Wake-Up Call About Burnout—And How We Perceive Women Leaders

When New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern recently announced her resignation and would not seek re-election, she Explanation That, “I know what this job entails, and I know I don’t already have enough money in the tank to do it justice.”

Soon, much of the coverage was not just about her own political challenges, or just one person’s career decisions. It sparked a global conversation about two major overlapping issues of our time: job burnout and gender equality in leadership.

“Ardern’s resignation shows burnout is real – and it’s nothing to be ashamed of,” said one CNN title read. This bbcMeanwhile, one headline read, “Jacinda Ardern resigns: Can women really have it all?” Critics included Actress Jamee Rajamil, noting that headlines about men resigning from similar positions would never lead to such questions.This bbc Quickly changed the title, agreed”Not suitable”

as an executive gym pass, a company focused on helping build wellness in the global workplace, I know a lot about burnout. In addition to helping organizations reduce employee burnout, I also try to help my own employees avoid burnout. I myself have first-hand experience battling burnout. It happens to people every day, yet few — especially in public life — show the courage to address it openly.

To be clear, burnout can happen to anyone.World Health Organization Classification It is an “occupational phenomenon”.recent poll found that 59% of U.S. workers were experiencing at least a moderate level of burnout. Taking time off without a job is not an option for most people. Addressing and managing burnout requires action from everyone, including companies.

In general, burnout is more common among women. The researchers cite various possible reasons, including that women tend to be paid less and less likely to be promoted.They are also more likely to “lead single-parent households, experience child-related stress, spend time with household chores, and have lower self-esteem,” according to one researcher Pillar Published by UNICEF.

Undoubtedly, as one of the only 28 Female head of state, Ardern faces public scrutiny different The experience of many male leaders. Washington post famous Sexism plagued her tenure, and “combating it is part of her legacy.” All of this leads to stress, exhaustion and burnout.

I was saddened to hear the news of Ardern’s decision. Partly because we lost an important young female leader on the global stage, but also because, unfortunately, anyone can be overworked to the point of feeling burnt out.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern speaks during the Rātana celebrations in Whanganui, New Zealand, January 24, 2023.
Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images

I also admire and thank her for speaking out about her feelings and making it clear that the need to rest and recharge is natural. It’s part of being human. I just hope that others have the same courage and take the much needed steps to take care of themselves.

I hope Ardern’s decision serves as a wake-up call for leaders around the world, especially in the business world. The more we address burnout, the longer we can retain and develop the top talent that makes our organization successful.Failure to Address Burnout Isn’t Just Bad for People—It’s an Unnecessarily Major Problem loss For business.

It starts with executives setting an example of right behavior. When I need to skip a meeting and take a nap, I tell my employees. I also talk openly about the physical activity I engage in. According to a global survey by Gympass, work life health, found that physical activity is often the number one way to relieve stress among workers across many industries. I tell my team members about the activities I do to improve my well-being.

Equally important is creating a workplace culture that gives people the freedom and flexibility to engage in healthy activities and get work done when it works best for them.

Not only does this encourage them to take steps to address burnout, it also increases their exposure to tight labor markets and “ExtraordinaryJob growth, which keeps the ‘Great Quit’ going. Our survey found that well-being and flexibility are the two most important factors people consider when choosing a job, even before time off and opportunities for further training.

In fact, to prevent people from “running out of gas tanks,” I directed employees to take time off. When I sense someone is burning out, I don’t just say take a day off, I tell them to take a full week off as soon as possible.

I hope Ardern has a good time before refueling. This is well deserved. I have no doubt that when she is ready, she will bring her skills and talents to a project or organization that would benefit from her participation. In the meantime, let’s all learn the right lessons here. Addressing burnout is necessary—it helps individuals, businesses, nations, and the world prosper.

Livia de Bastos Martini is Chief Human Resources Officer gym pass.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own.

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