We each define work-life balance in different ways, many would define it as the balance between working and home life. Before COVID-19 and the advent, in many industries, of enforced remote working, there were distinct lines between an employee’s professional and personal lives. However, since the world has become more accustomed to working from home, there may have been a blurring of the boundaries and distinction between both elements of employees’ lives.
Research tells us that creating and maintaining a healthy work-life balance is crucial to maintaining employees’ physical and mental health.
advo would always recommend encouraging employees to look after themselves, as balancing their work with their home life can have significant benefits for businesses by limiting absenteeism, boosting morale, and creating higher productivity effectiveness. Undoubtedly, this approach can support your business to be more efficient during working hours while encouraging engagement and promoting a positive business culture.
Companies that have the reputation for creating and demonstrating a good work-life balance are more attractive to potential candidates and happier, healthier employees are more likely to be committed, loyal, and appreciative of the values promoted within your business.
In order to develop a positive culture, action and role models should ideally be seen at every level of your business, with a positive example from the top being key. Senior managers should demonstrate work-life balance behaviours, for instance, perhaps they work flexibly or work from home and promote the way in which they balance their work and home lives concurrently.
advo make the following suggestions as positive steps you may wish to consider to support a better work-life balance for your employees:
- Encourage employees to work sensible hours and take regular breaks away from their desks/workspace if possible. Working long hours doesn’t necessarily mean productive hours!
- Ensure that the employees’ workloads are realistic and reasonable. Check in with them regularly so that you may monitor progress and address any issues that may be prohibiting a healthy balance.
- Think about the time of meetings and how they can impact someone’s day! Could a 9am meeting be moved until later in the morning to allow employee’s that initial time to prepare and catch up with emails etc.?
- Try to avoid calls and meetings between 12 midday and 2.00pm to ensure that employees have an uninterrupted lunch break.
- Encourage the team to talk to one another, whether this be bumping into a colleague in the break out room, waiting for the kettle to boil in a kitchen area, or talking remotely for 5-minutes before a meeting to discuss their personal lives. Such as, what they got up to at the weekend or how their holiday was etc.
- Review annual leave calendars and encourage employees to split their annual leave at regular intervals throughout the year to ensure they have suitable time to rest and recharge.
- Consider encouraging light exercise throughout the day by introducing walking meetings or group lunchtime walks for a change of scene.
- Where appropriate and in line with your business demands, actively promote flexible working with staggered hours to provide some flexibility with appointments, childcare, or other outside commitments.
- Review your family-friendly policies and employee benefits, or promote what you are already doing to support your staff.
- Finally, and perhaps most importantly, ask your employees for their ideas on any innovative ways in which to improve their work-life balance as well as any changes that may be considered to balance work and home in order to ensure a sensible equilibrium between both. Collaborating with your employees may provide you with further insight and may help your business to contemplate workable strategies and solutions to support the balance of work and home life more effectively. If you are unable to implement some ideas, let employees know why and, likewise, how there might be some suggestions still that may be introduced to positive effect.
By encouraging your employees to find a strong work-life balance this will significantly limit both presenteeism and any resultant health problems that may lead to increased absenteeism, all while helping towards building an engaged and productive team. If you’re interested in achieving this for your business, then be sure to contact us today to discuss the details of a plan. Additionally, you can read more related material by clicking through to our news page.