Finding and maintaining a balance between work and life is tricky at the best of times. Throw a young family into the mix and it becomes even more of a challenge. After spending a Saturday morning indoors catching up on admin tasks and glancing out of the window and noticing my children playing outside, I realised that I wanted to be sharing these moments with them and that the balance in my life needed to be addressed. Somewhat ironically, this led to the founding of a new virtual personal assistant business and sent me down the path of an active pursuit of maintaining a better balance between spheres of my life.
In learning this, I have placed a premium on helping my employees achieve a similar balance and ensure that they are able to do so. Here are some ways I suggest can be used to achieve this:
How to Help Employees Create Work Life Balance
Something that I have incorporated into my businesses (wherever suitable) is a flexible working schedule arrangement. The idea focuses more on the achieving of a goal, be it hours that an employee has billed or tasks completed rather than having a rigid office hours structure that all employees have to abide by. This makes allowances for employees to manage their own time and find hours that they are most productive or comfortable at. An additional bonus is that it allows employees to accommodate their personal lives within their work commitments effectively.
Education and Training
I’m a firm believer in investing in your employees and the continued upskilling of my staff. Incentive programs that reward training courses and development of skills are a great way to ensure that your employees know that you want to develop and advance them. Accommodating this growth is a great way to reaffirm your commitment to their work life balance.
Granting Leave Easily
My personal approach to granting employees leave is to be as flexible and accommodating as possible. By ensuring that employees know that if they make preparations or provision for it their leave will be granted, it places them at ease and ensures that they know that the company cares about them as an individual and not purely as a resource. Similarly, allowing unpaid leave for life events means that no matter the circumstances, your employees know that they can attend to urgent personal matters or crises should there be a need to do so. This reinforces the human connection between employer and employees.
Benefits to Employees
Better Time Management
Allowing your employees to have flexible work hours allows them to optimize their work schedule to times of the day that are best suited to them. Aside from the benefit of treating the employee as an individual it also allows them to function at times when they are most productive and efficient. Enhanced productivity allows for more time in the day to deal with any tasks that need urgent attention and leads to better overall time management
When employees can work flexible hours and can choose to work in a manner that suits them, they feel that they are being treated as an individual. The feeling that your employer cares and accommodates you goes a long way towards boosting employee morale. The confidence and trust placed in employees instills confidence in themselves and encourages accountability. Happy, confident and trusted employees are far more productive and make an incredibly positive impact on the work environment.
Personal Well Being
Flexible working hours and working arrangements allow employees the opportunity to rest and reduce stress. Adjusting schedules and workplaces for even one day a week can have a dramatic impact on an employee’s well-being. It may make time for an activity they love or allow them to get to an important task that otherwise couldn’t have been accommodated. This can reduce stress levels which not only keeps your staff happier but also has health benefits.
Benefits to Employers
Improved Productivity of Employees
By letting employees enjoy flexible work schedules, employers ensure that their employees will be working when they are most productive. If an employee is not a morning person, they are bound to both appreciate flexibility and a later start that will lend itself to greater productivity. Allowing employees to work in sync with their body clocks has been proven to be up to 21 per cent more productive.
Reduced Employee Turnover
Happy employees are far less likely to leave. By accommodating employees, investing in them and ensuring that they are happy, you will reduce turnover. This will enhance company culture and improve the morale of employees further. Additionally, it will lead to your employees attracting potential candidates to apply for positions at your company.
Reputation Build Up
If a company can offer its employees work life balance, it will be more able to retain their top performers. This ensures that efficient and competent key team members are kept and that clients will know that the company only has the best employees in their team. This creates a wonderful image for the company and allows it to enhance its reputation from both its clients as well as its employees.
Finding a balance for your employees requires trust and patience and flexibility on the part of an employer. However, the benefits of an engaged, happy and productive workforce will be enjoyed not only by yourself but by your clients too. The only real question surrounding the promotion of your employees work life balance is if you can afford not to?