Burnout Is Our Next Big Threat

Sophie Wilkinson
·2-min read

During the tense and frustrating hours that turned into endless days of election coverage, where maps of Arizonan counties began taking up as much mental real estate as concepts like “go to bed” and “you’ve never even been to Arizona”, I kept wondering something.

No, not why a country that voted for Donald Trump four years ago almost voted for him again. Not why infamously sore winner Trump was turning out to be a sore loser too. What I really couldn’t fathom was at what point during the rehearsal for this fluorescent parade of antiquated ballot-counting techniques did then New Yorker writer Jeff Toobin decide that it was time to touch himself.

Because during an election rehearsal, that’s what the esteemed lawyer did – exposed himself on a Zoom with colleagues. He’s long since apologised for the mistake, explaining he didn’t know his camera was on. He was suspended impending investigations into the incident, and has since been sacked.

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While Toobin’s colleagues will know the incursions of using a home as a workplace, seeing a colleague’s penis was never meant to be one. It’s very clear from this incident that boundaries were crossed.

The issue of delineating those boundaries has never been more pertinent since covid has forced a large proportion of the workforce to transition to home working.

And boundaries will continue to be crossed – in smaller, or shall I say less revolting ways – so long as people continue to work from home. And yet, this week, Google’s CFO Ruth Polat spoke with glee at how more micromanaging and “check-ins” have upped employees’ productivity as they continue to adjust to this “new normal”.

This is hot on the tails of Deutsche Bank...

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