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4 warning signs your retail employees are overworked (and how to prevent it)

[ Guest Commment ]  Rob Press, Deputy. Did you know that burnout is costing U.S. businesses around $190 billion each year? Despite this, 36 percent of… View Article


4 warning signs your retail employees are overworked (and how to prevent it)

[ Guest Commment ]  Rob Press, Deputy.

Did you know that burnout is costing U.S. businesses around $190 billion each year?

Despite this, 36 percent of employees say that their company has made no effort to prevent or address burnout – a critical error on their behalf.

When sales are down, or your retail store isn’t meeting KPIs on a consistent basis, the problem could be that your retail employees are overworked. Here are four warning signs and what you can do about them.

1. Employees are calling in sick more often than usual

When employees are stressed, research shows that their immune system can become weakened, making them more susceptible to getting sick. They may also be taking mental health days due to high stress and burnout.

The best way to combat this is by discouraging a culture of presenteeism. When employees feel like they have to be at work constantly – even when they’re sick – it’s a clear indication of presenteeism, which should be shut down immediately. Remind employees to stay home if they’re feeling unwell and to take days off where needed.

2. Employees are having more conflicts with each other

Stressed individuals are more likely to snap at others or get into arguments, as their emotional capacity has been depleted, and they’re unable to self-regulate. This can quickly lead to a toxic work environment and decreased productivity.

To prevent an increase in conflicts, it may help to build a retail employee scheduling strategy that prioritizes work breaks and mental health days. Another strategy is to invest in conflict resolution training for your employees.

3. Employees are doing the bare minimum

Overworked employees have been depleted of their motivation and enthusiasm; they may be going through the motions, but they’re not putting forth their best effort on the floor.

Employees can make or break the customer experience, so it’s important that your employees are happy and on top of their game.

If your lunch breaks and vacation days are currently optional, consider making them more formalized, or even mandatory. Sometimes employees need a little push to take care of themselves properly.

4. Employees are quitting

Have you noticed a sudden spike in resignations? More retail employees than ever are quitting their jobs to find a better work-life balance; they’re not interested in being overworked, and will leave for something better if work conditions don’t improve.

Make your retail store more appealing to employees by offering flexible work arrangements like remote work, part-time hours, or reduced hours. Promote work-life balance as opposed to prioritizing objectives over wellbeing.


If you’ve noticed that your employees are burnt out, lazy, conflict-prone, or leaving your business in droves, it’s time to take a closer look at your company culture. Are you promoting work-life balance? Do your employees feel comfortable taking days off when they need to?

Investing in your retail employees can take time and effort, but it more than pays off through improved performance, heightened morale, and greater efficiency all-round.

To find out how Deputy can help your retail operation, click here.

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