Finding a job that offers a quality work-life balance is becoming one of the highest priorities for job seekers in 2018. Studies show that applicants are more invested in finding jobs that work well with their home lives than they are with higher paying jobs or those that offer more PTO. Creating a workspace that provides a healthy work-life balance can not only assist you in your recruitment and retention needs but also has been proven to increase employee productivity. Does your company take strides to promote a healthy environment for employees to balance their home and work lives? Read on to get a few strategies your organization can implement to create happier and healthier employees and improve your overall company culture.
1) Shake Things Up a Little
A healthy work-life balance starts with a healthy work life. Your employees are going to thrive when they’re working in creative settings that promote collaboration and new ideas. Nothing is more detrimental to an employee’s success than being stuck in the same monotonous routine, working day after day under fluorescent lights and expected to produce new, creative content regularly. Of course, we can’t all pack up our entire office and move to some hip open space with fancy chairs and an abundance of plants. However, you can allow your employees a certain amount of freedom that will break up their routine and encourage those creative cogs to run a little easier.
Let a department work from home or a nearby coffee shop every once in a while. Instead of meeting in a stuffy conference room, hold “walking meetings” whenever possible. When your body is moving and your blood is flowing, ideas will come easier and you and your employees will feel healthier overall. Any opportunity you have to get your employees “outside the box” is worth taking to improve their work life.
2) Be Flexible with Schedules
There are a number of ways you can help your employees achieve a healthy work-life balance in regards to their schedules. First of all, you could offer unlimited PTO to your employees. I know the idea seems outlandish, but in recent years the practice has been picked up by many organizations. Obviously, it isn’t ideal for every business, but for those that could implement unlimited PTO, it would allow their employees all the time they need to ensure they have the time to take care of their home lives while still getting all of their work done.
Unsure if unlimited PTO is right for your company? Find out here!
If Unlimited PTO simply isn’t an option, you could also consider offering something called Flextime. Basically, Flextime allows your employees to choose the individual start and end times within certain limits that their employer sets up ahead of time. For instance, you could have a blanket rule that states they cannot come in earlier than 5 am and stay later than 9 pm, but employees could work any 8 hour period within that time frame. Flextime periods usually precede or follow a core time during which all employees must be present. This is great for those employees that are part- or full-time students or have family obligations that require them to be home at non-conventional times during the workweek.
Finally, if all else fails, you should at least allow your employees to come in late, take a long lunch, or duck out early from time to time in order to run errands, go to appointments, and essentially manage their home lives as much as possible. Having a rigid schedule and not enough PTO to allow your employees to handle everything they need outside of work is going to cause burnout and vastly decrease productivity around the office. This brings me to my next point.
3) Be Generous with PTO
Assuming unlimited PTO is out of the question, it’s still important to evaluate your business’s time off policy. You don’t have to go too crazy with the amount of PTO you offer, but you should at least be flexible with when and how employees can use it. Your time off policy should be fair and allow your employees to take vacation time without stress. When your employees know they have personal days set aside for them to use for family needs, illnesses, and vacation time, they will feel much more comfortable when it comes to maintaining a work-life balance.
4) Offer Leniency with Parenting
Anybody who’s ever raised children knows all too well how parenting is a full-time job in itself. Parents of young children have to be more conscious of their work-life balance than most because they are likely to wear themselves down a lot faster and rarely find time to do anything for themselves. Parents never know when they’re going to have a sick kid who has to leave school or a last-minute snow day. Allowing your employees to prioritize their family emergencies as they arise without fear of repercussions is one of the best ways you can help them lead a healthy work-life balance.
5) Be a Role Model
If you want your employees to lead a healthy work-life balance, you must first make it a priority to do so yourself. You must lead by example in order to set the expectation for your employees’ behavior. If you take a personal day to spend time with your family and still answer noncritical emails and work-related phone calls, your employees will feel expected to do the same. By having a healthy work-life balance yourself, your employees will follow suit and the tone of your organization’s culture and your investment in their wellbeing will be apparent to all.
When it comes down to it, you can’t force your employees to follow these practices. However, by offering these solutions and investing in your employees’ personal lives, you’ll see amazing results all across the board. What strategies does your company have in place to encourage employees to lead a healthy, balanced lifestyle?
Want more tips on how to have a healthy Work-Life Balance?
Check out this guide by our friends over at Groom + Style - Work-Life Balance: A Guide to Surviving the Stress.