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Kandi Wiens

The author is a senior fellow at the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education, a well-known researcher and speaker on burnout, emotional intelligence, and resilience; and developer of the Burnout Quiz. The article discusses burnout in the context of awareness and self-awareness, based on her research. She contends that “leaders who display social awareness—the ability to accurately understand the impact of our emotions, thoughts, and behaviors on others, and to understand and share the feelings of others—are better at decision-making, coaching and engaging their teams, and communication and collaboration.” However, “when leaders are burned out, it’s never just an individual problem. Entire teams and even organizations can suffer when leaders lose motivation and energy, struggle with their ability to influence people, make poorer (and often slower) decisions, and spread an attitude of cynicism throughout organizations.” She discusses what she terms “core burnout immunity awareness skills.” These are, in her words, Awareness of what triggers your workplace stress; Awareness of what increases your sensitivity to stress; Awareness of your tipping point between good stress and bad stress; and Awareness of your burnout risk level.

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