Burnout is the topic of the moment and this is more than fair! After all, many people suffer from this syndrome daily, having to deal with consequences that go well beyond their professional lives. Even in Sweden, where labor laws are considered one of the most advanced, physical and mental exhaustion was once the main reason for missing work.
Here in Brazil, the scenario is not much different: according to a survey released by Época magazine, about 20 million people suffer from burnout in the country. And it doesn’t only affect people. Organizations are also impacted – and that explains why this is one of the branding trends that deserves the attention of brands in 2020.
Burnout vs companies: change is necessary
To begin with, we need to understand that the loss of productivity caused by burnout has directly affected the functioning of organizations and, even, labor laws. Just to give you an idea, some countries, like Finland, are reducing working hours in order to minimize the stress levels of workers (who may spend more time with their families) and, consequently, maintain productivity.
In countries that do not follow the same line, this initiative was adopted by some private companies. After all, there is an understanding today that organizations are also responsible for the well-being of their employees. Microsoft in Japan, for example, opted to have weeks with only four business days and, according to the company, the revenue per employee grew 40%, considered a very significant increase.
But the quality of the hours worked is also a very important issue to prevent or combat burnout. For this reason, organizations have been increasingly concerned with the Employee Experience, valuing, for example, more comfortable and stimulating work environments that provide happiness and growth to their employees.
We can say that these companies are on the “right track”. After all, if the brand has a purpose (and it needs to have it!) It is essential to exercise it and a very good way to start is with its employees. But the Burnout Syndrome brings up yet another question: it reflects on the perception that consumers have of companies and this varies according to the actions taken by the company. Therefore, brands are already bringing this discussion to the branding itself.
More empathic communication
In addition to ensuring well-being internally, with actions to prevent or combat burnout, companies need to communicate them to their consumers. But some brands are expanding this initiative even further, carrying out various activities that address mental health, to seek stress-reducing of consumers too. The pioneers, in this case, are social networks, and this is no accident. After all, they are considered villains when it comes to anxiety, which is one of the causes of burnout.
To mitigate this negative impact, Instagram, for example, removed the number of likes and has already launched a campaign on the topic and co-created the #digitalsempressão project, which, in general, is a guide for the user to enjoy the network in the best possible way and start to reflect on your sharing choices.
But companies in the mental health field (which have even shown surprising results) and in other areas are also venturing to talk about the subject. And Burger King is one of them. In 2019, the brand launched, in the USA, a campaign with “unfortunate snacks”, together with Mental Health America. Thus, the menu included combos such as “Pissed Meal”, for those who feel angry, and “Blue Meal”, for those who are saddest on the day. With this action, the company’s idea was to show that we are not always well and that this is completely normal. Watch the campaign video.
Thus, we can see that companies are starting to address more issues such as mental health, anxiety, depression and burnout, both internally and externally. For this, they have been approaching not only the work itself or its product, but human relations more broadly. And that makes a lot of sense, because we know that for a person to reach high levels of exhaustion, different spheres of life can be involved in this process. And talking about it is fundamental!
Therefore, this theme has been one of the main bets for brands in 2020! And, if you want to know more about this and other trends that also promise to stand out this year, check out our e-book.