Using Stories to Beat Workplace Burnout

Using Stories to Beat Workplace Burnout

This On-Demand event was originally presented on October 11, 2023 (60 min)


It had become a daily topic of discussion. Several months ago, the CEO announced grand plans for a technology transformation to meet Wall Street’s expectations. But that transformation was now adding another layer of complexity to everyone’s already busy days. Everyone from senior management to the frontline showed workplace burnout from the sheer volume of details and demands. To make matters worse, no one really understood the value behind all the changes inflight. People were becoming distrustful of one another. On a Zoom call last week, one of the business leaders stated the obvious: “I’m having to make constant choices between doing what’s required to run the business and implementing these new initiatives. I’ve got people wandering around in a stupor because I haven’t been able to give them clear directions. I’m waiting for this whole thing to boil over.”

Sound familiar? Like it or not, workplace burnout has become a way of life for too many people. The result: an unprecedented level of decision fatigue and emotional exhaustion. So, what can you do to balance these competing demands? And what can we do to help you help those combat this malady?

Here’s a peek at some storied secret actions:

  • Build connections with your stakeholders by demonstrating empathy. Use stories to show you have listened and are willing and able to stand in people’s shoes.
  • Express emotions in a safe way that gives people permission to acknowledge their fears, hopes, frustrations, and dreams.
  • Bring realism and specificity to training scenarios that are customized to the roles and day-to-day emerging realities for attendees.
  • Activate peer-to-peer informal social learning to strengthen learning throughout the organization.


Now how about combatting decision fatigue?

Workplace burnout impairs performance and drains energy critical for effective collaboration. We’ll examine two key strategies you can put to work to deal with the unrelenting pressures in today’s workplace.

Join Terrence Gargiulo and Bob Wendover in a thought-provoking conversation about some novel ways of using stories and overcoming decision fatigue to avoid workplace burnout.

Be sure to sign up for the webinar to gain access to a free assessment to see how you’re measuring some key indicators related to burnout from decision fatigue. Get the Decision Fatigue Assessment.

Attendees will learn

  • How to apply story-based approaches to the organizational transformation activities of engagement, enablement, and communication.
  • Three key story-based communication skills critical for success.
  • How to assess their level of decision fatigue and improve workplace burnout.
  • How to apply two strategies for excising decision fatigue for people during a change initiative.


Terrence Gargiulo is the former Chief Storyteller of Accenture. He is the author of eight books, several of which have been translated into Chinese, Korean, and Spanish. For his creative use of narrative, INC Magazine awarded Terrence their Marketing Master Award. His work as an internationally recognized organizational development consultant earned him the 2008 HR Leadership Award from the Asia Pacific HRM Congress for his groundbreaking research on story-based communication skills. He was the recipient of Training Industry Magazine’s 2018 award for best article of the year.

His past and present clients include Pfizer, Astra Zeneca, Visa, VMware, GM, HP, DTE Energy, MicroStrategy, Citrix, Fidelity, Salesforce, the US Federal Reserve Bank, Ceridian, Countrywide Financial, Washington Mutual, Intel, Guidance Software, Dreyer’s Ice Cream, US Coast Guard, Boston University, Raytheon, City of Lowell, Arthur D. Little, KANA Communications, Merck-Medco, Coca-Cola, Harvard Business School, and Cambridge Savings Bank.

Bob Wendover has been researching, writing, and speaking about workforce issues for more than 30 years.  He is the award-winning author of 12 books, including Smart Hiring, Figure It Out, Two Minute Motivation, Beating Burnout, and Crossing the Generational Divide. He has authored curricula on managing generational differences and improving workplace decision-making. He served on the management faculty of the University of Phoenix for ten years and as a special advisor to the American Productivity and Quality Center (APQC). Bob has written or contributed to more than 200 articles for a wide variety of publications. His credits include CNN, CNBC, The Wall Street Journal’s National Business Employment Weekly, Supervisory Management, Human Resources Professional, Women’s Wear Daily, Entrepreneur, and Money magazine. In addition, he has written monthly columns for both retailers and Realtors®.

His past and present clients include Deutsche Bank, Citigroup, IBM, KPMG, Discover Card Services, Shell Oil, International Dairy Queen, Kaiser Permanente, CITGO, Chevron USA, the Food Marketing Institute, Searle Pharmaceuticals, Super 8 Motels, Ace Hardware, Major League Baseball, the Professional Golfers Association and a host of other household names, government agencies, and educational institutions.

Available on Amazon


Using Stories to Beat Workplace Burnout

Stories help people to communicate with one another in surprising ways. By sharing stories, we are better able to express and appreciate our differences. The social network of stories becomes the fabric for meaning to emerge. Our differentiated sets of experiences are integrated and tied together by the rich, fluid nature of stories. In this medium of stories, we create the foundation for building a true community of learners. We’ll bring this magic alive in your organization to drive results and inspire commitment.

Learn more at

Special offer from this sponsor!

Stories connect people in unique ways, fostering understanding and unity. Our stories weave a tapestry of meaning, uniting diverse experiences. Join our storytelling community, where we inspire learning.

Use code HRDQPro for a 10% discount on storytelling products and workshops at and

Using Stories to Beat Workplace Burnout
Common Sense Enterprises, Inc

The workforce is changing dramatically. Are you keeping up? Learn the strategies we’ve gleaned from interviewing more than 3000 corporate leaders, business owners, and government executives within 500 organizations over the past 30 years. Whether it’s recruiting and retention, boosting productivity, or enhancing your critical thinking culture, discover what the best are doing through our seminars, online courses, and other resources.

Learn more at

Special offer from this sponsor!

The workforce is evolving rapidly. Stay ahead with insights from 3000+ leaders in 500 organizations over 30 years. Explore strategies for recruitment, productivity, and critical thinking in our seminars and courses. For HRDQ-U listeners, the Beating Burnout self-paced course, a $297 value, now available for just $97!

Use code HRDQU when you register.

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