As an employer, it’s important to be able to provide your employees with the resources, tools, and training that they’ll need in order to be successful at work. If you’re currently managing a remote workforce, for example, it’s essential to equip your staff with the remote communication tools that will enable them to cooperate and collaborate effectively while everyone’s working from home. In the same way, it’s critical for employers who are in the process of returning to the workplace to provide their employees with the information and supplies that will be required to keep everyone safe and healthy during the pandemic.
At the same time, it’s also important for employers to bear in mind that they are not the only determining factor when it comes to the happiness and productivity of their employees. There are also a wide variety of non-work related factors that are essential to the wellbeing of staff members.
The key responsibility (and challenge) for employers is to develop a workplace structure that enables employees to balance their energy, attention, and effort more or less equally between their work lives and their home lives. In recent years, this delicate dance has come to be known in the world of business as a healthy work-life balance.
Why is it Important for Employees to Maintain a Healthy Work-Life Balance?
When your employees are free to enjoy a healthier work-life balance, your organization as a whole will begin to thrive. This is because a healthy work-life balance has been unequivocally shown to be a key ingredient to the mental health of employees, regardless of the organization or the industry that they work within. An organization that does not provide its employees with an optimal work-life balance, in other words, will soon be staffed by a group of overworked, exhausted, and resentful individuals. Needless to say, those qualities are not conducive to the long-term success of any business enterprise.
Tips to Help Employers Improve Work-Life Balance Within Organizations
Improving the work-life balance of your staff members – and thereby improving your overall company culture – is a much simpler process than you might at first guess. It must begin, first and foremost, with a firm commitment on the part of an employer to make a change. Once that has taken place, the rest is relatively easy.
So if you’re ready to start providing your team members with a healthier work-life balance, here are three simple and proven strategies that you might try implementing:
Focus on output, not on time.
Many employers today will use daily hours as a metric of employee productivity. This, however, is not always a reliable indicator to use. In many cases, employees who know that their work hours are being monitored by a manager will deliberately take more time than they need to in order to run out the clock.
Other managers, in contrast, have discovered that output is a far more reliable and motivating metric for tracking employee performance. By giving employees a predetermined, daily work quota (instead of a mandatory time quota), you’ll incentivize them to be more productive, and you’ll simultaneously give them the opportunity to enjoy some extra personal time each day (provided that they’re able to finish up their work responsibilities with time to spare).
Encourage your employees to take regular breaks from work.
Even when they’re working from home, it’s important for employees to feel free to take intermittent breaks from work throughout the day. To that end, be sure to communicate to your employees that it’s perfectly okay for them to occasionally leave their workstations to get outside, get some exercise, or eat a snack. You can even set an example here by making it known that you yourself will be looking out for your own mental health by taking occasional breaks throughout any given workday.
Keep an open dialogue with your team members.
It’s impossible to understand the individual needs of your employees without engaging with them directly. And while it’s true that the COVID-19 pandemic has certainly made this more difficult than it used to be, it’s still possible for employers to maintain an open line of communication with their employees about their wellbeing at work.
With that in mind, you might consider making it a regular practice (say, once or twice a month) to connect with your employees via a group facetime call to discuss any roadblocks that they’ve been encountering, resources that they’ve been lacking, or ways that you might improve the overall experience of your remote workforce.
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