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Burnout rates increase in employees with certain personality traits- Are you attuned to them in hospitality?

The Big Five personality traits—Agreeableness, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Neuroticism, and Openness—have been systematically reviewed to understand their relationship with job burnout. Here's how each trait potentially influences the risk of experiencing burnout:

(The full article is linked below)

1. Neuroticism

  • High Neuroticism is significantly associated with an increased risk of burnout. Individuals with high levels of neuroticism tend to experience more negative emotions like anxiety, anger, and depression. Their inability to control impulses and manage stress effectively makes them more susceptible to the emotional exhaustion component of burnout. They are likely to perceive work situations more negatively and have less effective coping strategies, leading to a higher risk of burnout.

2. Agreeableness

  • Low Agreeableness is linked to a higher risk of burnout. Agreeable individuals are typically cooperative, friendly, and compassionate. Lower levels of these qualities may lead to conflicts and reduced social support at work, contributing to stress and burnout. Agreeable individuals usually have better interpersonal relations, which can serve as a buffer against stress, whereas those with lower agreeableness may lack these protective social networks.

3. Conscientiousness

  • Low Conscientiousness is associated with a higher likelihood of burnout. Conscientious individuals are organised, reliable, and diligent. They are more likely to manage their time and responsibilities effectively, reducing work stress. Low conscientiousness may lead to poor job performance, missed deadlines, and higher stress levels, contributing to burnout. Conscientious people's self-discipline and goal-directed behaviour can protect against the overwhelming feelings associated with burnout.

4. Extraversion

  • Low Extraversion is related to a greater risk of burnout. Extraverted individuals are sociable, assertive, and generally more positive. They are likely to seek social support and engage in social activities that can mitigate stress. Low extraversion (introversion) may result in fewer social interactions and a reduced ability to seek out support in stressful times, leading to increased isolation and stress, factors known to contribute to burnout.

5. Openness

  • Low Openness to experience is linked to a higher risk of burnout. Individuals high in openness are creative, curious, and open to new experiences. They may have a more flexible approach to challenges and stressors at work, seeing them as opportunities for growth rather than threats. Lower levels of openness might result in a less adaptive coping style, making it harder to deal with work stress and changes, thereby increasing the risk of burnout.

In summary, personality traits influence how individuals perceive and cope with work stress. High neuroticism and low levels of agreeableness, conscientiousness, extraversion, and openness are associated with a higher risk of burnout. Understanding these relationships can help in developing targeted interventions to reduce burnout risk by fostering resilience and adaptive coping strategies among workers with vulnerable personality profiles.

Organisations benefit from working with coaches who create safe objective spaces for employees. Consider how an executive coach can help your hospitality people mitigate the risk.


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