A county moves past burnout to a thriving future for their people

A county moves past burnout to a thriving future for their people

Like most local governments, Jefferson County government found itself facing the downstream impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic. Hummingly’s presentation at their 2024 annual virtual Leadership Summit provided leaders with practical tools and strategies to shape culture, prevent burnout and support their teams to thrive.

 

Client: Jefferson County Government

Challenge:  As a county government who responded to COVID-19 and continued to serve their community amidst challenging circumstances, many staff members have experienced burnout and emotional exhaustion.

Outcome: Recognizing and implementing strategies to mitigate burnout and create a positive, resilient culture. 

 

In the heart of Colorado, the Jefferson County government found itself facing the challenging impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic. With such a wide range of roles from construction personnel to teachers and public health staff, some were challenged with serving the community as an essential worker where working from home wasn’t an option, while others had to navigate a rapid shift to virtual work. Abigail Hoeh, the Senior Training Human Resources Business Partner at Jefferson County went on to explain that, “our entire staff as a whole, regardless of what level they fell, still needed to interact with community members who were stressed. You didn't really know what you were getting with every type of interaction and that has caused burnout and emotional exhaustion for our people.”

As more than 3,000 dedicated employees felt the pressures of serving their community through this challenging period, the organization's leaders recognized the need for strategies to navigate post-pandemic burnout.

When Jolie of Hummingly came to speak at their annual virtual Leadership Summit, everyone connected with her talk on burnout and resiliency. “Jolie’s presentation resonated across all levels of the organization, from frontline and boots-on-the-ground employees to executive-level employees who wear suits to work every day. It was applicable to caseworkers from the Human Services department, nurses and medical staff from the Public Health departments,” shared Abigail.

“Jolie’s talk highlighted that we can actually have some intentionality and proactivity with this, where we can help our teams be successful. We can reduce turnover. We can create this really positive, resilient culture rather than just constantly putting out fires and dealing with the emergencies, which then leads to that burnout. There are ways we can integrate what she's talked about into our culture and the mindset can change the way we're doing things moving forward.”

- Abigail Hoeh, Training Senior Human Resources Business Partner at Jefferson County

Jolie's message offered a lifeline. Her structured approach and relatable storytelling provided a roadmap for resilience, burnout prevention, and how to navigate moving forward. In addition to having the presentation recording available for all employees to revisit, Jefferson County is exploring Hummingly's resources like the Doing Well cards, and in-person workshops for specific groups in the organization.

According to Abigail, “One of the most important things from Jolie’s presentation was that she wasn’t overly theoretical and academic. She made her entire talk personable and being able to relate to your speaker, being able to relate to her story, made integrating her tips very easy to do. She was practical and clear - here’s three things you can do and here are three tips to help.”

Looking to the horizon, Jefferson County envisions a future of possibility. Through intentional action and proactive measures, the county government aims to foster a culture where employees thrive amidst adversity.

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