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Managing Work:Life Balance
Human Resources » Employee Relations

Chrm Message From: sanjay04 Total Posts: 57 Join Date: 23/08/2006
Rank: Manager Post Date: 31/03/2007 02:56:48 Points: 285 Location: United States

Dear all,

We are an IT organisation,considering the hectic schedule many a times employees have to stay away from home on projects.Though this has incentives attached to it ,one inevitale truth is that it results in an imbalance on personal front.

This site have always been a great source of knowlege and a great learning in to hr perspectives.I'd value if everyone on group who has understanding and has come across "Managing work Life Balance" fwd their inputs to me asap.


Sanjay Mewar

Chrm Message From: nikhil78 Total Posts: 27 Join Date: 23/08/2006  
Rank: Executive Post Date: 31/03/2007 03:02:26 Points: 135 Location: United States

Work life Balance has been one of the most important issues in the industry, predominantly IT.

And some factors that I feel play a major role in WLB are:

- Your Immediate Superior
- Orgn Culture
- Time Management
- Career
- Flexi Timings

To brief the above factors....they are dominant and inter-related. For e.g I just finished a research on "Career Anchors" with the sample size of 1000 IT professionals. I recognised 9 factors that dominates an IT person's career. Out of which 27% of employees voted for WLB. That is, WLB forms a major anchor to decide an individual's career.

Anyways, here is an industry practice....hope that might help u.

IBM is sponsoring many “fun ‘n’ learn” activities for its employees and their children to encourage a work/ life balance, under the aegis of IBM Global Work/ Life Fund. The company emphasises on Work/ Life balance as a key component to enhance the quality of life and productivity of every IBM employee across the globe. This year these activities will be organised through GenieKids, a forerunner in innovative and effective child-development.

Between April 1 and May 31, 2002, IBM is sponsoring the ‘Young Explorers Summer Camp’, comprising programmes like Explorer’s Club, Hobby Club and Yoga Club. This camp is open for all children between four to twelve years at the GenieKid Resource Centre. Commenting on IBM’s support of work/ life programme, Abraham Thomas, managing director, IBM India said, “IBM is committed in providing our employees with an attractive and comfortable working environment to maintain a healthy and productive lifestyle. This initiative will help our employees deal with the demands of home and family better in these times of hectic schedules and work pressure. Work/Life balance is a strategic initiative that helps IBM attract, motivate and retain the very best talent in the technology industry.”

The Resource Centre houses a library, activity based games, pottery classes, computer classes, etc. IBM employees can also attend parenting workshops.

The IBM Global Work/ Life Fund is a US$50 million fund launched in the year 2000 by Ted Childs, vice president, IBM Global Workforce Diversity. This fund aims to facilitate the development of innovative programmes around the world for IBM employees.

Hope this has given you an idea !!



Chrm Message From: sanjay04 Total Posts: 57 Join Date: 23/08/2006  
Rank: Manager Post Date: 31/03/2007 03:04:53 Points: 285 Location: United States

Dear nikhil,

Thanks a ton ,really appreaciate inputs given by you. Just a thought as rightly meioned by you WLB is a burning isue in IT industry.

So if a WLB index is to be developed what shud be the probable parameters considered ,below are mentoned a few.

- Job Satisfaction
- Job Nature (Work Load, Work Hours & Pay)
- Management Practices (Ways of treating employees and gving them opportunities to use their talent/abilities)
- Relations with Top Management
- Autonomy/control
- stress risks
- attracting a wider range of candidates, such as older part-time workers and carers

any more thots on devping WLB index??

Also ur research on career anchors is it possible to share knowledge w.r.t to the survey or atleast those 27 factors ..if possible

Once again thanks a ton for ur inputs and welcoming more of such.


Sanjay Mewar

Chrm Message From: ruchi@hr Total Posts: 41 Join Date: 23/08/2006  
Rank: Executive Post Date: 31/03/2007 03:09:03 Points: 205 Location: United States

A healthy work-life balance is achieved by establishing clear criteria for success that include work objectives, leisure plans, and aims for self-improvement. Take an honest look at your priorities and set goals that you can work towards.

Succeeding at work

Think deeply about your criteria for success at work. Is your criteria to get the job done at what sort of work relationships do you want? Reflect upon the impact work has on the rest of your life. Does work enrich the whole of your life or has your home life become merely at rest from work? Each day, ask yourself, "How do I know if I have been successful at work or not?" Be specific. Think about the quality of your relationships. How important is your self-development and learning? Start to write down your criteria.

Identifying roles

A role defines an area of responsibility, such as being a manager, parent, partner, or friend. To enjoy a health work-life balance you must define each of your roles. Be careful not to neglect your most important roles. E.g. be aware that your role as a parent can be damaged if you consistently prioritize your work above your family. Your role as a husband or a wife can suffer if you spend too much time and energy on your career or your children. And friendships can be lost if you do not make the time to pick up the phone. Be clear and flexible in your roles.

Succeeding in life

Think about your life as a whole - your family, friends, leisure pursuits, personal development goals, and involvement in your community. How significant a part do you want to play in the development of your children? What do you consider to be success in your friendships? What are your favorite leisure pursuits? What are your personal development goals? Realize that success is about all aspects of life, and not about work.

1. Make sure that your work is led by your criteria for success.

2. Take your interests outside work seriously.

3. Ask your friends and family what success means to them.

4. List, prioritize, and assess the important roles you play in your work and in your life.



Chrm Message From: rajul Total Posts: 52 Join Date: 23/08/2006  
Rank: Manager Post Date: 31/03/2007 03:11:08 Points: 260 Location: United States

Hi All,

As I see it, the most effective way to ensure work-life balance is to respect every employee's personal time.

In today's business world, this may not really be related to 'working hours', as the need for personal time varies from employee to employee, and depends on various factors such as family stage, hobbies / interests etc.

But what it does mean, is that every person in the organisation needs to genuinely hesitate before disturbing another colleague during that colleague's 'personal time' (perhaps after office hours, or on weekends, etc.). It also means that you don't ask for personal mobile numbers / residence numbers of colleagues, and even if you know these numbers, you don't use them unless in an absolute emergency.

The management needs to take a conscious decision of tracking in-time and out-time of employees and counselling / empowering employees who habitually stay long hours at work.

I believe that it is HR that needs to initially drive this initiative - perhaps send weekly employee-wise 'hours worked' reports to department heads and track average hours practice-wise / project-wise / team-wise etc. Over a period of time, other managers will automatically get involved as they see the benefit of following this principle.

I'm sure many of us will agree with these observations:

1) Many people go home late simply because it has become a habit with them -
they feel guilty if they leave early. Somehow the mind is conditioned to link productivity to not seeing the sun (!)

2) Many more people go home late because their bosses go home late, and leaving before the boss is 'not done' in the corporate world.

One thing is certain: this initiative must cascade top-down. If it is attempted half-heartedly or as a political statement, employees will see through the facade very easily, and that only makes the job tougher going forward. However if done right, you will soon see a tremendous increase in productivity, morale and loyalty.

Thanks and have a great day !

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