PROFIT asked readers what percentage of them have work-life balance. Exactly 50% of respondents said they do, and they offered insights on how they ensure their dedication to their company doesn’t get out of hand.
Here are some of the best answers:
“I try to walk my golden retriever, Frasier, 5 km three or four times per week on the forest trails just outside of the city where I live. During that time, the two of us work out all of my work-life problems, and he is the best listener.”
Andre Gagné [translated from French]:
“We encourage a good balance among work, rest and leisure time. We’re a video-game retailer, and we promote good balance so we’re not mistaken for the stereotype in our business of the nerdy little fat kid who lives in his parent’s basement.”
“I join a league or commit with friends to regular weekly golf and curling games. Those are a priority!”
“A new suite of time management tools and aids is necessary in this age of information overload and 7/24 access. The “pings” of personal email, business email, wireless phones and PDAs demand a discipline of focus never before taught or learned in order to free time for those activities and relationships that are truly most important.”
“I encourage walkabouts instead of coffee breaks. You can visit, you can laugh and have a bit of fun. I also encourage the use of the extra half-hour on company time to have lunch together as a social event so managers can invite others to join us. My goal is to offer flextime.”
“I believe it is an equal responsibility for employee and employer to institute that work-life balance.”
“Working with a dedicated team, we are able to support each other and provide cross training to ensure the client is always taken care of—it’s part of our evaluation process. This allows for more flexibility in scheduling.”
“My work-life balance is rarely actually in balance. It’s like an airplane heading for the runway: you are always correcting this way or that. You are never actually going exactly on target. Life works the same way. My family is used to me calling and saying I have to work late, and planning for family events has to be done well in advance so I can clear my schedule. I think the critical part of keeping your life in balance is knowing what is important to your family. For example, my daughter’s school had a father / daughter day that I could not attend. When I talked to her about it, I found out that while it was very important to her, she wasn’t that keen on the activity her school had planned. So we planned our own father / daughter day on a day when I could attend. We spent a whole day on the things she wanted and had a ball.”
For his answer, Bill Kennedy will receive a copy of Advantage Play: The Manager’s Guide to Creative Problem Solving by David Ben.