4 ways for CFOs to avoid burnout


Here are four ways to prevent going into freefall

As companies continue to search for ever higher levels of quality, service and overall business agility, the pressures are felt on individuals at all levels of the organisation. Executive burnout is a harsh reality. The phenomenon manifests itself in varying ways, including interpersonal problems, health issues, emotional fatigue and low productivity, and to different degrees in different people. Here are four ways to prevent going into freefall.


Look after yourself

It may sound obvious, but paying attention to your lifestyle, including diet, exercise and ensuring that you get adequate sleep – an underrated performance booster – should be your first port of call when trying to prevent burnout. Just 10 minutes of exercise is enough to get your blood pumping, release endorphins, and increase your focus and the merits of a healthy diet are well-documented.


Have creative outlets

Burnout interferes with your ability to perform well, increases rigid thinking, and decreases your ability to think accurately, flexibly, and creatively. If it is not feasible to do this at the office, try learning a new skill and developing passions outside the workplace. It doesn’t have to be anything esoteric – simply keeping a journal will give you an avenue of self-expression.


Build a support network

Surround yourself with people who give you energy and inspire you to stay focused on what’s really important to you. These relationships can also help fill any voids you have in your life from an emotional, physical, spiritual and intellectual perspective. While maintaining this network requires time and commitment, there are few better ways to negate burnout.


Reassess your priorities

If you’ve burned out or are, close to doing so, you will be forced to reflect on where you are in life and this can be a positive breakthrough. You might find that you’re working yourself into the ground for something you no longer love to do, or, you’ve lost sight of an end goal you still truly believe in. This can lead to positive action and renewal.


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From small-town beginnings to the C-suite

CFO Barbara Makhubedu learnt the value of support, determination and relationships from a very young age, and uses those same values as she leads finance at Liberty Two Degrees.