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By definition, work-life integration is the ideal allocation of time between work, home, and health, without feeling stressed. Work-life integration is the key to employee productivity and happiness.
With hybrid working culture and digitalization, it's becoming more and more challenging to separate our personal and professional lives. Studies suggest that around 60% of the population take their work home. It affects your emotional well-being and creates relationship conflicts and miscommunication. How did sitting with a laptop at the dinner table, taking calls, or checking mail at a party become so normalized?
Work-life balance is necessary for the overall quality of life and happiness index. To strike a balance between work and life, you need to identify work-life balance problems and then find solutions that work for you. An organization also plays a vital role in promoting workplace wellness by allowing employees to set an equilibrium between work and personal life to avoid employee burnout and stress.
A corporate survey shows that employees with a healthy work-life balance are 21% more productive than those who don't. A decline in productivity implies an imbalance in work and life. Someone with a fulfilling life(including friends, family, and wellness activities) displays higher productivity.
Emotional and physical exhaustion can cause absenteeism. Due to excessive working hours, workers might want to adjust their downtime by taking extra leaves. Many people resign from jobs that have inflexible working hours and rigid work schedules. As a result, organizations lose top talent, and staff turnover increases.
The most damaging effect of poor work-life management is stress and anxiety. If prolonged, it can lead to obesity, diabetes, and immune disorders.
Poor work-life management is the leading cause of working overtime. Employees who work overtime due to work pressure suffer from burnout and mental exhaustion. You can take steps to implement a flexible work policy for your employees to help them find that work-life equilibrium.
Inflexible work conditions and stressful work environments can prompt employees to take more emergency leaves than usual.
Reasons for poor work-life integration can vary from increased responsibilities, economic conditions, inflexible working hours, or lack of motivation.
An organization can take the following steps to ensure a healthy work-life integration for their employees:
Provide HR training to educate employees about the benefits of healthy work-life integration and the ill effects of an imbalance. Teach them to set their priorities straight. Frequently conduct surveys and take feedback from employees about work-related issues. Train the managers to identify work-life integration problems and be accessible to their employees.
Give your employees the benefit of working on flexible hours. Some people bear the responsibility of dependent family members. They need to work flexibly to have a healthy work-life balance. Give the option of working from home and flexible schedules.
Schedule yoga classes, meditation programs, nutrition, and sleep cycle coaching to foster a healthy lifestyle culture. Provide them with the resources to unwind and relax. Have fun activities for employee bonding and engagement.
Allow job sharing during excess work and personal problems. Divide time and responsibilities strategically. Make sure to pay them accordingly. It will benefit the organization when people
with varied skills and experience work together. It will also promote collaboration and avoid employee burnout.
Be flexible in allowing ample leaves for childbirth, sickness, vacation, or any suitable personal need. Employees return with renewed energy and higher motivation after taking some time off.
If your employees want to pursue higher education or learn new skills, encourage them by offering the option of unpaid leaves. You can also pay for relevant certifications and courses that enhance the on-the-job experience.
Management must follow a healthy work-life balance to encourage their employees to follow suit. Only reach your employees after working hours. Provide frequent breaks and keep checking on their wellness.
What is work-life integration to you? Is it stress-free work and home environment, a job that fulfills you, having enough time for leisure, or the right mix of all those things?
It's an individual responsibility to create a balanced life:
Learn how to say NO and set clear boundaries.
Use technology to organize and manage your time better.
Take working only as a badge of honor.
Turn off work notifications during significant personal commitments.
Choose work that doesn't feel like a burden. When you do what you love, you will automatically enjoy it and find ways to organize and manage your life around that.
Work-life integration is integral for a healthy mind and body. It benefits the organization by increasing the productivity of employees. It promotes effective communication, boosts morale, and fosters a positive work environment. Identify work-life integration problems in your organization and formulate policies based on an employee centric-approach.
On an individual level, a healthy balance brings value to daily life activities, improves both personal and professional relationships, and reduces stress. Set boundaries, prepare in advance, and organize your schedules to create a balance in all aspects of life.
Shellye is committed to helping people from diverse backgrounds achieve their career and life aspirations. The content published above was made in collaboration with our members.
Shellye Archambeau is determined to help you with all possible strategies to climb the ladder of success. She values your feedback. Do mention them in the comment section below.