Posted by: Raj Mali | June 19, 2007

6 steps to implement work-life balance initiative in your organization?

When starting, it is best to appoint an individual or in some cases, form a joint work/life committee. To research needs and to implement the program, suggested steps to take are as follows:

1. Assess the workplaces’ current situation and objectives.

  • Survey employees, supervisors, and managers.
  • Ask about needs, concerns, etc. Find out about bottom line or underlying concerns (e.g., employees report not being able to cope with workplace stress. What is the true source of this stress?)

2. Get buy-in from all levels.

Educate all members of the company about the benefits and challenges of introducing these programs. Be clear on the intentions and goals of the program. Provide any necessary training and/or education to help these address concerns.

Some common concerns or challenges that may need to be addressed include the misconceptions that:

  • People should keep their personal lives at home,
  • Being present equals being productive/ hours at work equals performance/results,
  • Benefit programs can make people happier, but not more productive,
  • Family-friendly policies are soft human resources issues, mainly for women,
  • Management will lose control,
  • It’s only for non-managerial positions,
  • One program is good for everyone, or
  • Participation will be a career-limiting move.

3. Be clear how hours, productivity and deadlines will be monitored.

Address fears and apprehension expressed by both employees and managers. Be sure that workload issues are resolved and set realistic targets.

4. Create a policy or guideline:

  • Clearly state its use and purpose.
  • Be clear about the impact on vacation time, compensation and other benefits, if any.

5. Initiate a trial period and/or pilot studies.

6. Monitor, re-survey, and make any adjustments that are necessary.

Act on recommendations for modification or for further enhancements.

At MINT, we are everyday engaged in developing new models and concepts that can help organizations to foster these initiatives. If you are looking for some assistance, we will be glad to be of help. Just drop us a line at raj@mintlearning.com

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