Day 58 – What is balance?

18 Nov 2019

Work/ Life Balance – why is the balance important? This question was passed to me to think about as one of my topic’s and it really has got me thinking.

Are we adding stress into life trying to get that equilibrium between personal/ professional and family life? Can it really all be equal and why does it matter to others so much if we can see someone putting more time into work than family for example?

I think as a society we make a lot of assumptions and judgements!

Throughout an employee life cycle, companies assume there are going to be different elements which are attractive to work. In HR we research, follow trends and develop practices to support employees throughout their careers.

At the start we assume that it may be the potential to progress, pay increases/ bonuses, the social element, is there a regular Friday night drink, a club to join?  We create policies and practices which support engagement.

As we start to manage family life with work, flexible working, flexi benefits and children friendly employers become more attractive. Or do they for everyone?

As we progress through the decades of work, policies which support additional life demands such as being on call as either as grandparents or to own elderly parents. For women the menopause (very topical) and increase in mental health support for men as they near the thought of retirement. Again, I am generalising and assuming.

I sound like I am being a bit cynical as I see huge value in work life balance but I do think so many companies seem to think if they offer lots of support, they expect their employees to take it up and use it and by magic get the balance they need. Peoples needs change all the time and so many people don’t follow the same path so need extra support at times which are unexpected.

Every single person is different, and I suppose in a bit of a rambled way I think we should all hold that thought and try and be more open minded. If work is the main part that excites that person and other elements have less value, then great! If their colleague wants to work less hours as they are heavily involved in a club outside of work, then why shouldn’t they utilise flexi work.

#challenge #100days #HR #worklifebalance