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Finding Balance At Work

By Bigg Success Staff
December 14, 2007

Work-Life Balance

woman balances on chairsSirota Survey Intelligence, specialists in attitude research, just released the results of a survey on work – life balance. They report that 73% of employees view their work – life balance positively. 

“Work-life balance is almost an afterthought to people who feel their employers are meeting their end of the deal by being fair, providing interesting and meaningful work, and recognition or rewards for a job well-done,” said Douglas Klein, President of Sirota Survey Intelligence. “Work-life balance becomes a real issue when employees feel that their employers aren’t holding up to their part of the partnership.”

We find Mr. Klein’s last sentence the most striking. Employees must believe their employers are responsive to their wants and needs. But what Mr. Klein doesn’t state here, and what needs to be stated, is that employers must feel the same thing – that their employees are meeting their wants and needs.

It’s about people.
Relationships. Two people learning to trust each other. It’s personal – one-to-one. It’s the only way to succeed personally and professionally. But many managers forget that there’s a person on the end of the problem du jour. Many employees don’t think enough about their manager’s goals.

It’s about people communicating.
So it begins with a desire to form a relationship, on both sides. That kernel grows to trust. Now you’re ready to communicate. To put the wants and needs of both of you on the table. To understand each other. To get what both of you want. To meet all of your needs and wants.

It takes a two-way commitment.
Both the employer and the employee have to commit to this process. It’s easy to get too busy to pay attention to the relationship. But you’ll find that a small investment of your time will yield big dividends in the future. It’s all about being effective.

For example, for employers, the Sirota research shows that 81% of the employees who say they have the “right amount of work” are satisfied at work. Only 69% of employees who report having “too much work” are satisfied with their jobs. A strikingly low 44% of employees who state that they have “too little to do” are happy about it. 

So if you can strike the “Goldilocks’ balance”, you’ll have a far more productive staff.

Now, for employees, understand that if you’re a producer, if you’ve got a great attitude, if you’re a team player, you make it almost impossible to not support you, both professionally and personally. As Klein said, “The key, then, is to balance company and personal demands within a partnership culture and a spirit of win – win.”

Focus first on delivering what your boss needs so it’s easier for your boss to give you what you need.

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(Photo by Brent and MariLynn)