The uncertain economy has caused many employers to maintain a lean workforce. As a result, employees are often working additional hours to get their jobs done. The expanded workweek may prevent employees from attending children’s events, socializing with friends or taking quality time for themselves.
As an employer, it is important to know the negative effects associated with an improper balance between work and life. People who spend most of their waking hours working are much more likely to suffer from exhaustion, stress and poor sleep habits. The side effects from frequent overtime hours could spiral into business hazards, such as regular absenteeism, decreased retention and poor work performance.
Taking steps to help your staff members achieve work/life balance will provide your organization with a number of benefits. The following are some of the positive changes companies that value and incorporate work/life balance initiatives have seen:
- Improvement in productivity
- Increase in employee satisfaction
- Reduction in tardiness and absenteeism
- Greater company loyalty and teamwork
- Decrease in stress, sickness and exhaustion
There are a number of ways that an organization can ensure that their employees are maintaining work/life balance. Depending on the size of the organization, the staff members and the budget, implementing some of the ideas below could be helpful in reaching work/life balance for the entire company:
- Childcare and eldercare assistance
- Flexible work hours
- Company wellness programs with onsite workshops
- Reduced cost for fitness memberships
- On-site and off-site professional development opportunities
Employees can also make an effort to improve their quality of life. Encourage staff members to take ownership of their work/life balance by asking them to speak up if they receive too much work or feel strained to keep up with a project deadline. They can also utilize some of the practices below to make the most of their time inside and outside of work:
- Set deadlines for projects to help maintain the amount of time spent working on them
- Prioritize tasks by their importance and work to complete the more pressing assignments first
- Take breaks between long periods of work to help regain focus
- Exercise, eat well and sleep at least seven hours each night to sustain energy
- Avoid discussing work when spending quality time with family and friends
Organizations that emphasize work/life balance improve their bottom line and create a positive environment for all of their staff members. To discuss various approaches for accomplishing a work/life balance initiative at your workplace, please contact a member of CAI’s Advice and Counsel Team at 919-878-9222 or 336-668-7746.
Photo Source: lululemon athletica