Nowadays we are increasingly faced with the paradigm of work-life balance. It is indeed very important to reconcile these two axes, because both need time, dedication, and are an integral part of our lives.
When we approach the topic of harmonization and conciliation between the aspects of work and family/personal life, so important in human life, we conclude that it is a very complex matter and a constant challenge. Mainly because, there is great difficulty in balancing professional pressure and demands with all the needs, duties, and tasks in personal and family life, becoming more challenging when we have children, due to the enormous need for time management, sometimes inadequate in any of these scopes.
The human being needs useful personal time, feel a sense of well-being in life as a whole, to have time for self-care, to have a healthy personal and family life, and at the same time to produce, to achieve goals, to actively contribute to income/support and to feel professional achievement. Both are important aspects that should go hand in hand.
We know from various studies, and even from what we observe, that if there is a positive reconciliation between work and personal life, and if companies cooperate and support their employees in this direction, the benefits are very significant for people, for companies, and for the organizational environment itself.
For employees, it can increase their level of satisfaction and happiness with both aspects of their life and consequently improve their work performance and productivity. For companies, it can increase the commitment of employees, as well as their dedication to their work, as they start to feel more fulfilled, favoring time management and priorities, contributing positively to the company’s efficiency and performance. Employees have a deeper, more cohesive feeling when it comes to valuing the company, promoting a sense of belonging, thus becoming a real “team player”.
Clearly, companies that invest in measures that promote a better work-life balance also become more attractive to professionals, the market, and the public in general.
I thought of some strategies that, from my point of view, could be an added value for companies in the promotion of this so challenging balance and harmonization between personal and professional life, as well as the resulting motivation of their employees. Some of them have already been studied, thought out, and applied in companies:
- Promote autonomy, make work management and organization more flexible
- Flexible schedules, more adjusted to the personal/family needs of each, not neglecting and always complying with the tasks, responsibilities or objectives defined
- Remote work, or flexible hybrid models (when the functions allow it)
- Increasing the number of vacation days (more annual time dedicated only to personal life)
- Creating childcare spaces and services for employees’ children
- Finding strategies to encourage greater participation of fathers in family life
- Strategies that support the provision of care to the elderly, or family members with special needs;
- Definition of strategies and incentives to employees that promote self-care, health and time dedicated to personal life.
I offer this text for the reflection of all of us. Society has been undergoing changes at a dizzying pace, with implications on the day-to-day life of each one. The practices of work-life balance are a current theme that makes increasingly more sense to reflect on and think about strategies to improve our life quality.
At Integer we are increasingly stepping and working to promote and achieve this balance.