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Work-Life Balance & How It Affects Employee Wellbeing

By May 9, 2023June 1st, 2023No Comments

A good work-life balance is equally as important for employers as it is for employees. Unfortunately, over time long working hours have become the norm, although this has brought its own set of issues with it. If employees have an even balance the chances of them simply burning out is far higher which will be echoed throughout there work. There is a new shift where companies are attempting to promote a work-life balance.

Promoting a good work-life balance does not mean that employees take Friday off every week but rather it can mean that their working life does not necessarily come first. It can be as simple as allowing employees to work from home one day a week or working flexi-time so that they can drop kids to school in the mornings.

Some companies are slower than others to take employee well-being into account, as they do not have a clear understanding of what the advantages of a positive work-life balance and how it can affect your company.

There are many things to consider as to why a good work-life balance is important for employees and their well-being.

What is Work-Life Balance?

Work-life balance refers to the equilibrium between professional responsibilities and personal life, which includes family, social, leisure, and self-care activities. Achieving a healthy work-life balance is essential for overall well-being, as it helps prevent burnout, reduce stress, and improve overall satisfaction in both work and personal domains.

An effective work-life balance involves setting boundaries between work and personal time, prioritizing self-care, and managing time efficiently to ensure that both professional and personal needs are met. Employers can contribute to work-life balance by offering flexible work arrangements, encouraging regular breaks, and promoting a supportive workplace culture that values employees’ holistic well-being.

An example of work-life balance could be an employee who effectively manages their professional and personal responsibilities by establishing a clear daily routine. This individual might work from 9 am to 5 pm, focusing exclusively on their job tasks during that time. After work, they might spend quality time with their family, engage in leisure activities such as reading, exercising, or pursuing hobbies, and allocate time for self-care and personal growth.

To achieve this balance, the employee might utilize efficient time management techniques, avoid working overtime, and ensure that they do not bring work-related stress or tasks into their personal life.

Their employer could support this work-life balance by offering flexible work hours, implementing a reasonable workload, and encouraging employees to take their vacation days and breaks to recharge. As a result, the employee experiences reduced stress levels, increased job satisfaction, and a higher overall sense of well-being.

Benefits of Maintaining Good Work-Life Balance

There are many benefits of maintaining good work-life balance. Here are a few:

Improved productivity

We are all only human; our energy levels can only stay high for so long. Burning employees into the ground will only allow your business to grow to a certain point. According to the Harvard Business Review ‘[i]the psychological and physical problems of burned-out employees cost an estimated $125 billion to $190 billion a year in healthcare spending in the United States.’ The cost of implementing a better work-life balance will be a drop in the ocean in comparison. Employees need to be given time to relax and live their own lives so that in work they are focused and maximising potential.  Employee wellness can play a critical role in making employees more productive.

Attracting top talent

When employing top talent as an employer, keep in mind that such talent will have many opportunities and you need to make your company as attractive as possible. By encouraging a work-life balance in accordance with your corporate wellness scheme, individuals will be more attracted to your company. It will also help you keep the talent that you currently have when your employees are happier, they are more likely to stay.

Reduced absenteeism

Think in practical terms here, if your employees spend most of their time stressed in work or commuting to and from work, their health is bound to take a dip. Stressed and unhealthy employees are bound to take more time off work which will increase your levels of absenteeism.

It is important to remember that investing in employees is not just wellness, but it is also a good business move, a work-life balance strategy is not a new buzzword that is here today and gone tomorrow.  There has been a shift in recent years and people are now expecting to be able to live seven days a week and not waiting for the weekends.

This change is crucial for any employee wellness strategy plan and is fundamental to employee wellness. It is just basic logic, when nearly two thirds of employees have experienced a negative effect on their personal life, including lack of personal development, physical and mental health problems, and poor relationships and poor home life they are not going to feel energised or happy enough in their personal lives to give 100% in work. By approaching work-life balance from a business perspective it is very simple. By allowing employees to optimize their work-life balance, the company will see a greater response which will have a hugely positive effect on the company

How to Foster Good Work-Life Balance

Fostering good work-life balance for your employees is crucial in creating a positive work environment, improving overall job satisfaction, and increasing productivity. By promoting a healthy balance between professional and personal life, you can support your employees’ well-being, reduce burnout, and enhance loyalty and retention. Here are a few strategies to consider when promoting work-life balance in your organization:

Set realistic expectations

Ensure that your employees have a manageable workload and avoid setting unrealistic expectations that may lead to excessive overtime or burnout. Encourage open communication and provide opportunities for employees to voice their concerns or discuss their workloads, so adjustments can be made as needed.

Promote team-building and social activities

Organize events and activities that allow employees to connect with their colleagues and build relationships outside of work tasks. This can help create a sense of camaraderie and social support, fostering a positive work culture that values both professional success and personal well-being.

Provide support for employee well-being

Invest in initiatives that support your employees’ physical and mental health, such as wellness programs, access to counseling services, or workshops on stress management and self-care. Creating a supportive work environment shows your commitment to employees’ overall well-being and can contribute to a healthier work-life balance.

Take a Work-Life Balance Workshop

Our team of Wellbeing Specialists have created a training exploring how to achieve work-life balance. This session takes a practical look at your workday, examining how to manage your energy levels, your productivity, your home responsibilities, and of course, your wellbeing.