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How to get the Balance

Technology has brought many advantages to businesses and employees alike, but there is a downside and that is the failure to switch off. Work-life balance used to be about being able to leave the office at a reasonable time and leave work behind. But now with text and email on mobile phones, even being away from the office doesn’t allow one to switch off as easily.

Modern workplace reality

According to a 2015 report by Earnst & Young, 33% of millennials are saying that trying to manage the work-life balance is getting harder and 47% of them indicate that working hours have work-life balanceincreased. There seems to be an expectation from colleagues and bosses that they can email or text at all hours and expect a prompt response. With 78% of millennials living as dual career couples, this can be very disruptive of home life. Meals and family times get interrupted and this creates stress at home. Perhaps it’s all these constant interruptions that has 75% of millennials wanting more flexibility with regards to work and office hours, without this affecting the opportunity for promotion. With work intruding so much on home life, it’s natural to want to push back to restore the balance.   

Work-life balance or integration

It seems it’s not as much as trying to find a work-life balance as finding a way to integrate the two and still have a life. Many people say they like the convenience of being able to check emails quickly on their mobile phone when they have a gap. But is this because the expectation has been created by companies or is it because we have become so used to being always on that we no longer know how to switch off?

Either way, this leads to heightened levels of stress which isn’t healthy, especially not in the long term. And it is the responsibility of both employers and employees to change this.

Employer responsibilities:

Companies can offer flexibility for staff on all levels, not just senior management and reserve after hours messages for genuine emergencies and top urgent projects instead of it being the expected norm. There are numerous studies showing that happier employees are more productive, so demanding longer hours isn’t necessarily beneficial for the business. Providing training for time management can help employees become more efficient in their work so that they don’t end up working after hours.  

How to become a balanced employee

Perhaps one of the critical factors to finding the balance is understanding what is important and urgent and how this aligns with one’s personal values and work ethics. At different times in life one may have different priorities. Sometimes family or personal well-being will come first, at other times work. The key to finding that work-life balance is to never allow the scale to tip too far in one direction.  

Know what your work obligations are. Keep promises to deliver to a client on a certain day. When employees demonstrate that they can be relied upon to be productive and prioritise work responsibly, companies are more likely to trust them enough to allow greater flexibility.

Learning to prioritise tasks can also help to reduce stress because then the less important and urgent things aren’t allowed to clutter up your day and don’t distract from more important tasks. Most importantly: Practice switching off when at home so that you wean yourself off the need to constantly be in contact. Putting personal boundaries in place is one of the best ways to achieve a healthier work-life balance and liberate yourself from unnecessary stress.

Resource On Demand (ROD) is Europe’s first specialist Salesforce Recruitment Agency. They were founded in 2007 and are highly respected across the entire Salesforce ecosystem. Their specialist areas of recruitment include; Salesforce (SFDC); digital marketing and marketing automation technologies, which include Eloqua, Marketo, ExactTarget and Pardot; Human Capital Management (HCM) technologies such as Workday and SAP HCM and SuccessFactors. For more information contact ROD on rod@resourceondemand.com or on 020 8123 7769.
2017-02-28T11:44:49+00:00 Careers, Work Tips|