Catch yourself sending emails at 9:00 PM? Taking work calls during time with friends?
Technology and WFH make it hard to unplug, leading to a severe lack of work-life balance. It may feel like an issue employees have to troubleshoot on their own, but work-life balance goes both ways. Employers and employees must combine efforts to find harmony.
Why is work-life balance important to employers?
Work-life balance affects business success. Employees who feel overworked may end up harboring resentment and becoming less productive.
Amid today’s current labor climate, in what some are calling The Great Resignation, employees are more likely than ever to simply walk out when faced with a workload or treatment that they don’t favor.
What can employers do?
- Allow flexible hours – Proper balance sometimes means deviating from the standard 8-5. Create a flexible schedule, and respect that schedule, no matter how tempting it is to request something a couple minutes past shift end.
- Prioritize major life events – According to a study by Workfront, two out of five employees have missed major family-centric events like birthdays, weddings, and anniversaries due to work. What’s important to your employees should be important to you! Companies whose work requires occasional weekend hours should be especially mindful to avoid pressuring employees into missing important events.
- Unlimited PTO – Many companies ranked highly for work-life balance have enacted an unlimited PTO system. It has its pros and cons of course, but it’s not as unrealistic as you may think. It can help boost recruitment, retention, productivity, and employee satisfaction.
What can employees do?
- Set times to disconnect – You’re probably thinking, “easier said than done,” but is it? Sometimes the power button or Do Not Disturb setting is your best friend. Schedule power-off times and hold true on that promise to yourself.
- “Commute” – Even if you’re working remotely, fill the time you would usually spend commuting with an activity like walking the dog or working out. It will create bookends to your day that will indicate to your mind and body that work is either beginning or ending.
- Voice your concerns – If you feel like your work-life balance is nonexistent, it may be time to speak up. Many companies are increasingly understanding of the need for work-life balance, and your boss may not know there’s an issue unless you say something. Highlight the benefits that more balance would bring them, such as increased productivity and higher quality work.