The work-life balance is dead…. Long live the work-life blend!
The work life balance has long been tossed around as the way of separating your life from your work. Well, Stop the Press! The work/ life balance no longer works and in the future it will work even less.
With communications and connectivity following us around 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, it is all too easy to work huge hours and not know where to stop. The shape of the working world is changing. 9-5 is no longer practical in many fields and forcibly segmenting yourself away from your work leaves remnants of unfinished tasks or documents scooting round your brain. That will please no one, not you, not your employer and certainly not your clients.
The working world is rapidly changing into one where you will need to blend your work and personal lives in order to achieve a harmonious accord. The employers of the future will need to embrace a task and deliverables based working practices where staff are left to their own devices, so long as they deliver tasks successfully and on time. More and more frequently I hear of people, including myself, stopping work to go and do this or that, then catching up later. As long as I deliver what I said I would when I said I would, where is the issue? Communication is the key, I could rave on about Lync, but you can guess my thoughts there J …it is so easy to be ‘accessible’ with tools like that. I don’t need to be sat at my desk waiting on a call or email so I can act on it immediately!
The blend is about being accessible to your colleagues or partners but being smart around what you do, when you do it and managing the timescales and expectations you set. The ability to manage your time is critical here, and some people and employers just won’t get it. For those that do, you will get a more relaxed, more flexible and more dedicated workforce.
Don’t try and cleave your life in to segments, merge them and you will get a far happier middle ground that will most likely please your family, your employer and lastly, you.