Creating a Work/Life Balance

It’s hard to prove whether there’s more stress today than there was 30 years ago, but employers are certainly starting to respond to employees’ need for work/life balance today more than ever before. According to the American Institute of Stress, 75-90% of physician visits are related to stress. Recent studies by the National Institute for Occupational Health show that the workplace has become the single greatest source of stress. This might be true for some, but many employers are taking great strides to improve work/life balance and reduce workplace-related stress.

Is The Employer Responsible?

This question is highly subjective, however regardless of the answer, employers are taking responsibility. A study by the Kenexa Research Institute showed that employees who were more favorable toward their organization’s efforts to support work-life balance also indicated a much lower intent to leave the organization, greater pride in their organization, a willingness to recommend it as a place to work and higher overall job satisfaction.

Using Work/Life Balance as a Recruitment Tool

According to the Forbes article, “Balance: The New Workplace Perk,” 85% of recruiters have seen candidates reject a job offer because it didn’t include enough work-life balance. The article states that two-thirds of companies are developing programs to help their top performers spend more time with family. What might seem like a compromise for employers at first actually has proven to have positive results. Employees have testified that having a more flexible workplace makes them more productive.

Work/Life Balance Techniques That Really Work

One of the more popular approaches to work/life balance is flexibility. More and more employers are offering employees a flexible work week in terms of hours and days. This even extends to parents who are being offered half-days or a two-or-three-day work week. Employers are also offering a flexible work week to relieve employees of high gas prices (i.e. working 4 10-hour days per week). Job sharing is also becoming a popular option among employees who have children.

What is your company doing to provide its employees with a great work/life balance? Let us know by leaving a comment below!

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6 Responses to Creating a Work/Life Balance

  1. Nat says:

    Flexibility in your work is a big part of maintaining the life balance you need. I think that it is something that you need to earn over time. As you start to prove yourself and deliver value to your employer you are more likely to be trusted to work in a more flexible manner.
    Where I work I am given a set of boundaries to work within and, as long as I am delivering, I can basically do what I want. The provision of a mobile phone, laptop and other required tools of the trade are provided by the company to help me to maintain the flexibility I need.

  2. Flexibility is the magic word. Employees of the future will expect flexibility in order to handle the responsibilities of work, home, children and parents. Productivity and results will become more important rather than “face” time in the office.

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  4. Sheryle Moon says:

    I think the question we all need to ask is: do you work to live or live to work? There’s no right or wrong answer to this question, but it may help employees to clarify what’s important in life. We are all busy. As Henry David Thoreau once said, “so are the ants. The question is, what are we busy about?” If workers feel they have flexibility in their workplace, then they are able to take time out to see the kids’ in a school play or look after a sick spouse, they are much less likely to complain about their lack of work/life balance.

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