HR News and Views

HR News and Views

The growing importance of work life balance

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

“Long work hours and highly stressful jobs not only hamper employees’ ability to harmonize work and family life but also are associated with health risks, such as increased smoking and alcohol consumption, weight gain and depression. Work life conflict has also been associated with numerous physical and mental health implications.” Business Improvement Architects – Canada 2014.

The concept of work/life balance has become increasingly important as more organisations look for ways to improve the performance and retention of their staff, while reducing operating costs associated with internal health and safety issues. Burnout is now only one of the many implications of a lack of work/life balance, engagement, retention, and overall performance all hinge on getting the balance right.

Many say that over the coming decade it will be one of the most important issues that executives and human resource professionals will be expected to manage. As technology provides us with greater flexibility, including the ability to work from just about anywhere in the world, it also blurs the lines between work and life.

So what simple steps can you start in your own workplace?

  1. Look for ways to introduce more flexibility within applicable roles but make sure there are policies in place to provide boundaries and clarity.
  2. Improve communication throughout the organisation so people feel safe to clearly express their desires and needs. Promote pathways to encourage them to explore potential alternatives and solutions rather than expecting this to come from management.
  3. Increase the number of supportive managers within the organisation that understand the importance of employee “wellness” as well as the bottom line.
  4. Increase employees sense of control by encouraging them to think (for themselves) of ways balance can be increased in their roles and promote a “solutions” not “problems” focus.
  5. Regularly review any changes made and adjust as required.

Contact ON-Q HR consulting services for assistance in creating a more balanced workplace 1800 761 561 or



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