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“When do you need that by?”
A key question to alleviate burnout
Always-on pressure is a real struggle, especially if you work in an environment where instantaneous responsiveness and quick turnaround times are a gold standard.
One of the major contributors to burnout are deadlines that are too tight. In the spirt of responsiveness and wanting to deliver amazing service, I see client relationship managers immediately offer deadlines that may look good to the client but run the team ragged because they are, sometimes unreasonably, tight.
What if, instead, the manager asked the client “When do you need that by?” first, before offering a deadline. In many cases, the client doesn’t need it as quickly as the manager offered. If they do need it rapidly, then fine. But if the manager can buy the team some time so that not EVERYTHING is urgent, it goes a long way in mitigating burnout.
Some relationship managers push back on this idea because they are afraid of losing a relationship. I’m not sure I buy that, especially when they haven’t even tried it. And if they do lose the relationship by asking a service-oriented question, then maybe it’s not a great client to have.
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