Researchers Bellet, de Neve, and Ward suggests that there is a relationship between happiness and productivity. In an experiment, happier call center workers sold 20% more than less happy ones. That is why, as an HR manager, it is now a smart move to start delivering happiness.
Nurturing Work-Life Balance at the office is not just a noble pursuit—it’s an essential strategy for enhancing productivity and employee well-being.
Consider Lisa, a dedicated manager whose story mirrors the struggles of countless professionals today. Despite her commitment to her work, Lisa finds herself increasingly burned out and disconnected from her personal life. This scenario highlights the pervasive challenges individuals face in achieving work-life balance amidst the pressures of modern corporate culture.
Work-life balance, often defined as the equilibrium between professional responsibilities and personal pursuits, is crucial for fostering happiness and overall well-being.
The PERMA+ model, developed by psychologist Martin Seligman, emphasizes six key factors;
- positive emotions
- positive relationships
- and health, both mental and physical
that contribute to a fulfilling life. Understanding these concepts is essential for HR managers seeking to cultivate a work environment that prioritizes employee happiness and productivity.
As part of your responsibilities, you could take the task of helping people be happy with the excuse of increasing productivity.
Where to start?
As professionals struggle to juggle professional responsibilities and personal commitments, finding equilibrium between the two has emerged as a significant challenge. However, cultivating a culture that values and supports work-life balance is not only beneficial for individuals but also essential for the overall success and well-being of the organization.
If you look closely at the PERMA+ factors from the perspective of a person in modern society, these factors can be related to either personal life, work, or both. According to this, fostering a work-life balance is necessary to avoid making either the work-related factors or the personal factors take over each other. Work-life balance refers to the equilibrium between the time and effort allocated to work-related activities and those devoted to personal pursuits, such as family, hobbies, and relaxation. However, it’s crucial to recognize that work-life balance is not just an individual endeavor but is deeply intertwined with the culture and practices within an organization.
A Work-Life Balance Culture
Since work-life balance is about organizing your time, an organization’s culture that promotes it should reflect the following aspects:
- Flexible Work Arrangements: To offer flexible work options, such as remote work or flexible hours, to accommodate diverse lifestyles and personal needs.
- Encourage Boundaries: To educate employees on the importance of setting boundaries between work and personal life.
- Promote Time Management: Provide training and resources to help employees improve their time management skills.
How to foster a work-life balance culture in your organization?
There are two aspects related to the fostering of values or ideas in an organization culture which are education and incentives. Work-life balance education and incentives are disseminated through communication. This means that to foster new values in your office culture, you need to make people talk about them. Framed in the information technology era, you should make work-life balance-related information appear in your employees’ social media flow.
Some ideas to kickstart this conversation could be through conferences, workshops, or even by sharing articles and videos with your colleagues. But the most important way to make people talk about it is to lead by example. Managers and leaders play a crucial role in shaping workplace culture. By prioritizing their own work-life balance and demonstrating respect for employees’ personal time, they set a positive example to follow and talk about.
Offering incentives, like a health allowance or wellbeing initiatives, is also important to complement the conversation and motivate your employees to act when needed. Besides this, recognizing and celebrating successes in promoting work-life balance within the organization is vital for fostering a supportive culture.
HR managers can establish recognition programs, share success stories, and host appreciation events to acknowledge individuals or teams that demonstrate exceptional commitment. Tangible rewards and peer recognition incentivize continued efforts, while facilitating knowledge sharing through platforms and forums empowers employees with valuable insights and best practices. Regular review and adaptation of recognition initiatives based on employee feedback ensure ongoing engagement and impact, creating a workplace environment where well-being is prioritized and celebrated.
Things become complicated when you consider that every individual is different and has a unique background. In this case, the use of technology can be the smartest way to relieve your workload and make you succeed with your happiness project.
Leveraging automation and technology can streamline the process of promoting work-life balance within organizations. Solutions like Mindtemp’s digital coach offer a proactive approach to monitoring employee well-being, providing personalized support and resources to address areas of imbalance.
By utilizing tools such as Mindtemp, HR managers can effectively identify and address individual needs while fostering a culture that values employee health and happiness.
Mindtemp’s digital coach is a solution that combines a pulse meter and a coach for each employee. To gather information from a user, the digital coach asks a couple of questions a day about thirteen different categories that reflect among other things your employee’s work-life balance.
Besides showing this information to you, the HR manager, as your co-worker answers the questions, with a tap on a scale from one to five, the digital coach senses if the user is low in some specific aspect. Then it sends mini texts and videos about why this specific aspect is important and how he or she can start developing it.
What is so good about it, is:
- That you are redirecting the responsibility of taking care of your employees’ well-being to themselves.
- That you can tackle the problem of each employee individually.
- That you can reach your employees even outside the office.
- That you work proactively to avoid general negative trends.
- That you can still make interventions if you discover negative trends.
With the help of Mindtemp’s digital coach, it is easier to identify why a specific co-worker is not achieving work-life balance and help inform him/her about it. This is a way to foster work-life balance in every co-worker that will start talking about it and sharing information with each other.
As HR managers, it’s imperative that we prioritize the cultivation of a work-life balance culture within our organizations. By embracing flexible policies, promoting boundary-setting, and leveraging technology-driven solutions, we can empower employees to thrive both personally and professionally. Let us commit to fostering environments where happiness and productivity go hand in hand, creating a workplace culture that celebrates the holistic well-being of every individual.
Alberto for Mindtemp