Working at a dealership has its rewards. Whether it’s seeing a satisfied customer drive off the parking lot or enjoying a hard-earned commission, employees discover many benefits when working at a dealership. However, they also discover many challenges.
Whether you’ve realized it, burnout is one of the most common problems employees face, especially when working in sales. While fun and lucrative, selling vehicles is one of the most demanding jobs. It takes patience, persistence, and a hefty amount of people skills to ensure car buyers feel comfortable. Given the difficulty, sales reps burn out quickly, increasing turnover, which is the last thing your dealership needs right now.
Labor shortages are already impacting the industry, particularly in service departments. The lack of technicians has increased wait times for vehicle owners while decreasing customer satisfaction. If your dealership wants to prevent its sales department from also struggling, you can’t afford to let your team burn out and quit.
But how can you solve the issue? It’s simple—know the signs of burnout and take steps to prevent them so that your sales team feels healthy and happy at work.
What is Burnout?
First things first—what exactly is burnout? The term was coined in the 1970s by psychologist Herbert Freudenverger. It describes a severe state of mental and physical exhaustion that eliminates the joy people get from their careers and social interactions.
The condition is worse than ordinary fatigue. When someone feels burned out, they struggle to cope with stress and manage day-to-day responsibilities. They may even develop a pessimistic outlook on life and feel so hopeless that getting out of bed in the morning is a challenge.
5 Clear Signs of Burnout
While burnout is mentally and physically uncomfortable, it’s not always easy to spot. It’s not like noticing an employee who’s sick with a cold. Burnout is less blunt in how it manifests. Still, there are five tell-tale signs your sales employees are running on fumes:
- Isolation: One significant sign of burnout is intentional isolation. When people experience burnout, they usually feel overwhelmed, causing them to reduce social interaction with family, friends, and coworkers.
- Exhaustion: Do any of your sales employees frequently complain about headaches, stomachaches, sleep problems, or changes in appetite? If so, those are physical signs of burnout.
- Irritability: When workers are burning out, they’re not as fun to work with—often, they lose their cool with colleagues. Even doing everyday tasks might set them off because they already feel overwhelmed.
- Escape fantasies: Dissatisfaction with life entices people to escape reality. Sometimes, that looks like using drugs, alcohol, or food. Other times, it’s daydreaming about solo vacations or running away.
- Constantly ill: Are any of your sales reps frequently sick? If so, that’s a sign of burnout. Like most stress conditions, burnout can weaken the immune system, increasing people’s risk of getting sick or experiencing insomnia, depression, or anxiety.
If some of these signs bring certain employees to mind, don’t worry. The symptoms of burnout are also side effects of other conditions, so there’s a chance your employees could be experiencing something that has nothing to do with their jobs. However, that’s not an excuse to avoid doing something. To ensure you at least create an environment where your sales employees thrive, you need to take steps to prevent any chance of burnout compromising your dealership’s success.
How to Prevent Burnout
Fortunately, preventing burnout isn’t hard. All the strategies have one thing in common: they increase your sales reps’ quality of life in the workplace. Keeping that in mind, here are three tips to push burnout out of your dealership.
1. Prioritize Employees’ Health
While you can’t control how employees manage their health, you can encourage them to make good health decisions. A proper diet, exercise, and deep sleep will go a long way in helping your sales team avoid burnout. So, you should encourage your sales reps to prioritize their health.
If you see an employee consistently working long hours and eating at their desk while crossing off tasks, tell them to take a break. Encourage them to go on a walk, eat a good lunch, and stop working at a decent time to ensure they get an appropriate amount of sleep.
Also, make it easy for employees to maintain a healthy lifestyle by offering nutritious snacks and drinks in the break room. Instead of stocking it with Red Bull and candy, provide healthy options like fruit, water, tea, and small vegetable trays.
2. Outsource Certain Tasks
Some tasks don’t need your sales team’s attention. If you can outsource little things so employees can focus on bigger responsibilities, you’ll decrease their workload to help reduce burnout. But what to-do’s should you outsource first? The most immediate answer is any DMV task that your sales team handles.
Whether it’s getting license plates, tags, or vehicle registration for car buyers, DMV responsibilities take time your sales employees don’t have when they’re trying to meet quotas. That’s why companies like Barry Risk Management exist. Our team has over 30 years of experience in the DMV industry and handles auto dealers’ DMV needs.
Regardless of a dealership’s location, our representatives at Barry Risk Management know what every state requires for car buyers to retrieve their license plates, tags, or vehicle registration. We know what paperwork to complete and submit, and we have an online platform that allows us to finish DMV tasks virtually and quickly.
When working with us, your sales team won’t have to visit the DMV in person, experience long wait times, or fill out forms. We handle all the DMV stuff, so your sales team can focus on essential tasks, knowing their customers are being cared for.
3. Encourage Work-Life Balance
While it’s great to see employees in the office, they need to have lives outside the office. Overworking decreases productivity and leads to burnout, which is why you should encourage work-life balance. Tell your sales reps to take vacations, whether somewhere beautiful or right in their homes.
Also, don’t disparage employees who take time off for illness, family reasons, or important events. In fact, consider developing a system that promotes flexible scheduling. More than ever, employees want flexibility. That doesn’t mean they don’t want to work. But it does mean they want the opportunity to take off, show up later than 8 a.m., and work from home when possible or necessary. Providing that opportunity will not only prevent burnout but also increase employee engagement and productivity.
Build a Healthy Work Environment
In a time when labor shortages are prevalent in the auto industry, your dealership can’t afford to have employees burn out. If you want your company to be successful, you must create an environment where employees can thrive, especially since some are more prone to experiencing burnout because of the nature and demands of their job.
Take a load off your sales team by contacting Barry Risk Management for your dealership’s DMV needs. You can reach a representative at 1-888-995-TAGS(8247).