Work-life balance is the juicy steak managers dangle in front of their hungry employees. Naturally, most employees value finding balance between work and their personal lives; the issue for managers is figuring out how to maximize value from their time at work so that it doesn’t tip the scale in an extreme way. Let’s look at three strategies you can implement to balance your employees’ time at work.
PUT THE BEST WORK, FIRST
To have more time for a personal life, we have to clear out blocks of time in our day to focus on the best (most important) work first. We tend to get wrapped up in time-wasting activities—about 69% of employees confess to wasting time each time, according to Salary.com. Obsessing over unimportant emails or procrastinating on menial tasks are just some examples. Where can you find the time to do the best work on the most important projects? We need to find out what brings imbalance. Putting the most important tasks first doesn’t mean less work. Furthermore, managers need to get away from the concept that working more means being better than the next person. A better strategy to consider is how to work smarter. Netflix, for example, they’ve bought into the idea that working more doesn’t mean the best work is being done. You don’t want your team to spin its wheels until they fall off.
Job burnout is caused by a very real type of physical, mental and emotional stress. We’re humans, not machines—and even those will break eventually. Burnout can come from extremes of a single activity such as staring at spreadsheets and getting tunnel vision. You have to identify when you or your team needs to slow down or when to just stop. Encouraging downtime at work is helpful and teaches employees to budget time to finish the most important work first. This strategy also keeps you plugged in to the wellbeing of your employees. Once you practice what you preach, the team will follow your lead.
GET FURTHER ENGAGEMENT
Being a manager that encourages the best work first and to make your employees pause for rest periods will make you revered among your team. They’ll write songs about you one day. When you walk the walk of work-life balance, you provide your team a great measure of transparency, which will directly engage your employees. They will commit to performing better and are less likely to leave your organization, according to The Corporate Leadership Council.
Integrating work-life balance into your culture is not going to kill your company; in fact, it may be the best thing you do for your business. Literally, lives are at stake here! Your team will be more engaged with you as a manager, be better managers of their own time as a whole, and be energized to put out the best possible work.