The Sustainable Career: Burnout, Boundaries, and Balance in Business
This is a summer course for summer 2021.
Maximum 50 students.
In today’s always-on, plugged-in business climate, many of us are pulled by the perceived 24-hour demands of the job - whether we actually are working extra hours or whether our thoughts are constantly about work. In many business sectors, stress is implied in the job description. Employees at all levels are being asked to do more, in less time, and with fewer resources.
However, when under constant stress, do you make high quality decisions, communicate effectively, cope with mistakes, and model good workplace behavior? Are we good colleagues? Do we contribute to a positive work environment? Perhaps, the reality is more that we avoid or postpone difficult tasks, communications or decisions, and sometimes even lash-out at colleagues or subordinates. A key question to ask is, do we effectively manage the stresses of the job (or school, or life for that matter)? When we are overwhelmed and stressed are we the best or worst version of ourselves? And, in that moment, are we the people our organizations and colleagues need us to be?
2020 has ushered in a new set of stressors with a global pandemic and concerns of a global economic downturn. This truth coupled with the realities of modern day work life require that those in and entering the workforce be able to cope with the stresses of life and work. According to the European Agency for Health and Safety at Work, “around half of European workers consider stress to be common in their workplace, and it contributes to around half of all lost working days. Psychosocial risks arise from poor work design, organization and management, as well as a poor social context of work, and they may result in negative psychological, physical and social outcomes such as work-related stress, burnout or depression.”
This course seeks to serve as a preventative measure or an intervention helping students to develop awareness, increase stress coping resources, build resilience and gain skills necessary to avoid burnout, set boundaries and find balance in business.
 European Agency for Health and Safety at Work https://osha.europa.eu/en/themes/psychosocial-risks-and- stress
This highly participatory and applied course will focus on scientifically-validated strategies for excelling at work, while leading a complete, balanced, and sustainable life. Teaching will be interdisciplinary and draw on research from philosophy, sociology, and psychology.
The following course concepts will be discussed in light of the increasing digital and mixed realities (offline and online) of our work and educational environments. These changing and restricted conditions can trigger stress and require that we learn how to organize our overlapping work and private spaces.
This is an excerpt from the complete course description for the course. If you are an active student at BI, you can find the complete course descriptions with information on eg. learning goals, learning process, curriculum and exam at portal.bi.no. We reserve the right to make changes to this description.