The concept of work-life balance seemed to be a lot more valid when everyone went to an office every day back in a time when Covid-19 didn’t plague the streets. Having a healthy work-life balance was no easy feat back then, nor has it become easier now especially when you’ve brought your entire office into your house.
The line between office hours and home time has blurred since everyone has been working from home and this leakage has caused most do not to have a clear distinction between when they should be working and when they should spend good quality time doing things in their personal lives.
While flexibility is always great and highly appreciated by most working professionals, it is this flexibility that adds to the work-life confusion of today. Maintaining a healthy work-life balance is imperative to maintain not only a healthy mental state but also to make sure you remain your most productive self when you do work. This will also help your employees think of work as less as another task to get done and more as something they would like to do and contribute their best self to. While many employees would like a certain level of work-life balance it is up to the employer to showcase how important it actually is. Companies should consider encouraging work-life balance as part of their employee engagement strategy as a means of not only keeping their employees happy but also retain employees and of course attract new, young, and talented employees.
Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why work-life balance is important for your organization and employees:
a. Less Exhaustion
It’s natural to get stressed every now and then, it can’t be avoided, but what can be avoided is exhausting yourself to a point where you eventually burn out. This does tend to happen in the workplace and companies do need to make sure that their employees are not constantly stressed, overworked, and overwhelmed. The effects of exhaustion are only detrimental. With everyone working from home, and not being able to separate work from home, this will lead to major exhaustion. Take the necessary measures to encourage employees to set specific time slots for work hours and to not let work leak into any of their personal time.
Sleep is also a very important factor when it comes to exhaustion and burning out. Try to get 6-8 hours of uninterrupted sleep daily. This guide has some great tips for improving sleep as a remote worker.
b. Supercharged Engagement
By encouraging your employees to set clear boundaries between work hours and personal time you are automatically increasing engagement levels and thus productivity levels. Companies with engaged employees earn 2.5x more revenue than companies with disengaged employees. An engaged workforce will mean that your employees will dedicate themselves to their work in the most efficient and focused way and your retention rate will also go up.
c. Better Health
A healthy employee is a happy employee and a happy employee is an engaged and productive employee. By encouraging a healthy work-life balance you are also helping your employees work towards a healthier mental and physical state. Stress can often lead to several mental issues which can then lead to many physical ailments as well or vice versa. High-stress levels can lead to several types of heart diseases, asthma, diabetes, depression and anxiety, Alzheimer’s, and gastrointestinal problems too just to name a few. Take the extra step to not only promote a healthy work-life balance but also to encourage employees to take better care of themselves and to emphasize the importance of a healthy lifestyle.
d. Higher Focus And Creativity
With a healthy work-life balance and a healthy mental and physical state, your employees are highly engaged and productive. The positive work environment leads to their focus levels being optimal too and they are highly invested in doing their best. This also means that they are highly creative and are more likely to think out of the box. All of which is brilliant for any company.
Now that we have established the monumental effects of having the right work-life balance, here’s how employers can promote a better work-life balance for their employees:
- If you believe in the benefits of a healthy work-life balance then make sure to walk the walk as you talk the talk. If you do want to see the actual returns on having a healthy work-life balance then make sure that it is exercised by all in the company at every level. It won’t work unless it is practiced by all and is absorbed as part of the work culture.
- If your human resources department is running a blank on how to create a better work environment then go to the source. Ask your employees how you can better their experience and help them improve their work-life balance.
- It’s part of every company policy to give their employees a certain amount of allotted time off. Many don’t take it. Encourage your employees to take this time off before the year ends.
- There is such a thing as too much screen time. Staring at a screen for too long can strain the eyes and the mind, glasses or not. Encourage your employees to take a little break after every hour or two for a bit to recharge.
It is inevitable that we’ll spend a significant amount of time every day working but this doesn’t mean it cannot be enjoyable nor does it mean that it should overpower the rest of our day and not allow us to do anything else. While most of us are working from home at the moment, we need to make sure that even though we’ve brought our work home, we leave it at the desk the minute we’re done for the day.