Finding balance in our lives is not always easy. With our 24/7 connectivity, the lines between work and personal time can become blurred. Do you find that your work day doesn’t end at quitting time anymore?
Employee view – workfront.com
- The vast majority of employees say they have a good work-life balance, but they also express some ambivalence about the intrusion of work and work-technology into their personal time. Only one-third of employees agree they have a good work-life balance.
- 89% of employees say it’s important for their employer not to contact them during off the clock time or to give clients their contact information.
- Over one-half employees think that technology has destroyed the modern family dinner because employers and clients demand immediate responses via text, email, etc. at any hour.
- Nearly 2 in 5 employees have missed important life events because of work.
Reasons for imbalance - workfront.com
- A large number of employees say the reasons their work vs life is out of balance is due to time-related issues and the people they work with and for. They also cited distractions like meetings and email.
- What were the top three work-related issues that employees believe have the most negative impact on their work-life balance? Bad bosses, constantly working beyond standard business hours and inflexibility in scheduling work hours and time off.
- Other contributing factors to this negative impact are incompetent colleagues, long commutes, unproductive meetings, employer issued devices which can’t be turned off and are expected to always be answered, non-stop emails, and bad or demanding clients.
Negative impact - workfront.com
- Missed life events such as birthdays, anniversaries, weddings and children’s activities
- Less time spent with family and friends
- Interruption of family time (conference calls, emails interrupting scheduled family activities)
- Lack of focus or engagement with family (still thinking about work, not being present in the moment)
- Results are that employees have low morale and are resentful of each other and/or management.
- Lots of employees feel fatigued and burned out, turnover is high and productivity is poor.
Solutions - workfront.com
- More than anything else, employees say more flexibility in how and where work can be done would improve their work-life balance.
- Allowance of remote working
- Offer unlimited PTO (paid time off)
- Impose restrictions on email response times (i.e., 9am – 6 pm)
- Establish “meeting free” blocks of time during the week
Finding balance - forbes.com
- Let go of perfectionism – it can become destructive if left unchecked in the workplace.
- Unplug – shut your phone off and enjoy the moment; don’t text at your kid’s soccer game or answer work emails during family time. Make quality time true quality time.
- Exercise and meditate – exercise is an effective stress reducer. It pumps feel-good endorphins through your body and lifts your mood.
- Limit time-wasting activities and people – identify what’s important to you and draw firm boundaries around where and what to devote your quality time to.
- Change the structure of your life – ask yourself what changes could make life easier for you. Focus on activities that you value most. Delegate or outsource everything else; let go in ways that benefit other people by giving them opportunities to grow.
- Start small and build – don’t commit to drastic changes that are doomed to fail; start small and ramp up from there.
For more information on work-life balance read this article from Harvard Business Review.
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