burnout or job burnout is characterized by exhaustion, lack of enthusiasm and motivation, feelings of ineffectiveness, and also may have the dimension of frustration or cynicism, and as a result reduced efficacy within the workplace.” So waht does our best friend Wikipedia say about burnout?
- learn new tech - be in an alpha male project - get no support - get no feedback but get responsibilities pulled - rewrite everything every night - I want to grow technically, but was also facing an uphill battle with no professional or emotional support - Eventually stopped caring. Which turned into questioning myself. Which turned into a breakdown.
from talking about the experience of others, burnout and technical growth are often at odds. Many of us in the development community feel oncomings of burnout while trying to grow, and bouts of guilt when we try to care ofr ourselves and aren’t constantly learning. It’s a battle of expectation versus reality.
have more representation in technical teams. Unrepresented groups have to work twice as hard as their majority peers to be see as successful. So in order to "keep up", they are already pushing too hard. Study on gender in the workplace found that in order to get past personal or organizational barriers in the workplace, many women agreed with the following statement: “I had to work twice as hard as my male colleagues to prove that I belonged at the company alongside them.” - University of Ottawa study: http://www.cips.ca/?q=system/ﬁles/CATA-WIT.pdf
and senior developers in the industry. Ageism = cultural ﬁt - people want “young hip” devs We also want experts. Many believe in the 10k rule (expert after 10k hours of something) 10k rule + ageism = we want young people to have done that 10k hour, rather than older folks who hit 10k over a reasonable amount of time.
prove themselves to others or try to ﬁt in an organization that does not suit them, people establish high personal expectations. In order to meet these expectations, they tend to focus solely on work while they take on more work than they otherwise would. It may happen that they become obsessed with doing everything themselves to show that they are irreplaceable.
have to devote everything to work, they now have no time and energy for anything else. Friends and family, eating and sleeping start to be seen as unnecessary or unimportant, as they reduce the time and energy that can be spent on work.
a state of denial of basic physical needs, perceptions and value systems change. Work consumes all energy, leaving none for friends and hobbies. The job is the new value system and people start to become emotionally blunt.
disengaged and demotivated in their job role. No physical emotional collapse like burnout, but may be a signal that burnout is on the way. Currently industry, I think, uses burnout to mean brownout. Now let’s revisit my burnout story. What do we notice between my story and the stages?
full of acid. The pipeline leads to a sewage treatment plant. The pipeline ends in a meat grinder.” The “pipeline” and the eﬀort to get underrepresented groups is still really, really, unhealthy. And if we’re bringing in great minds who have worked so hard to get a chance, only to force them into a place where they know they’ll face burnout and the emotional and physical repercussions of it, then are we going to push these groups away again?
still treat burnout like a badge of honor, and battle scar they’ve earned, proof that they’re working hard and are successful. Burnout has become a casual part of technology careers. Working late and sacriﬁcing personal lives ends up being rewarded as “dedication”, “being a go-getter”, “reliable to get things done”. Which gets people promoted. Which reinforced the view that burnout means you’ve made it.
If I burnout, I’m only part of the equation. The people and the situations that put me in the situation are equally involved in this discussion. So if you’re a manager, or a team lead, and your team is burning out, think about how you contributed to the situation. And what you could have done better.
Rachel mentioned in keynote - focus on HTML, CSS< JS fundamentals, accessibility fundamentals, and they will take you much farther than learning one speciﬁc framework that will be out of style in three years.
for you Christina Maslach and her colleague Michael Leiter postulated that burnout occurs when there is a disconnection between the organization and the individual with regard to what they called the six areas of work life: workload, control, reward, community, fairness, and values.
of the responsibility of speaking up on burnout on the individual, you are letting them burnout. People don’t want to show weakness. Why speak up if no one else is? Ask. Ask how they feel. Does it line up with the stages of burnout we saw? If so, start trying to ﬁx it.
admit when you don’t know things but don’t see it as a fault. Leverage team knowledge. Not everything should ride on you. deﬁne fomo As an industry, we’re always afraid on missing out on the next big thing. The next breakthrough. The latest and greatest. That we’ll be obsolete without knowing everything that’s happening. But we ALL have that. And we all are experts as something!
Huston says, are there things you could just not be doing? Think about what people want to know you for. Do you really have to do anything that doesn’t help you get there? I don’t want to be a full stack developer. I am a front-end developer. I say no to things that don’t serve my personal values of being an awesome front-end developer. Learning SQL queries doesn’t serve my desire to be an expert and HTML and CSS.