Looking at Work-Life from a Results-Based Perspective

“I would love to offer more flexibility, but I need people onsite to get work done.”

This is one of the most common statements I hear when managers attend one of my workplace flexibility seminars. For me, it can present a sticky situation since every work environment is different. While I don’t know your institution’s “face-time quotient” to ensure objectives are being met, I can ask one very simple question that can help move the work-life conversation along:  what are your deliverables? To rephrase: what are the key results you expect from your employee(s)?

If we know the results that are expected, then we can properly analyze if flex or alternative arrangements are appropriate for a position. Herein lies the problem – both managers and employees don’t always know what the deliverables are, therefore, when a work-life conversation comes up, it becomes difficult to make a strong case for or against flexibility and even more difficult to create a work plan that seems to be win-win.

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Results Oriented Work Environments: The Way of the Future?

In some ways there is nothing new about the Results Oriented Work Environment (or ROWE).  High performing managers and firms have rewarded people for their output and results for a long time now.  That being said, ROWE marks a conscious effort to research and advocate for a different type of workplace arrangement.

What is ROWE? 

 ROWE is a human resource strategy that is based on output rather than hours.  It focuses on results and disregards the counting of minutes, lunch hours, and emails answered.  ROWE has one central objective: get your job done.  Want to take a few days off?  Do it.  Need to work 65 hours this week to get a job done right?  You should do that too.  Continue reading “Results Oriented Work Environments: The Way of the Future?”

STOP COMPLAINING! The 1 Action Step You Must Take to Improve Work-Life Balance

I was recently at a conference when I overheard someone say “There is no work-life balance in this profession. People need to accept it.”

I took a few deep breaths as statements like this to me are complete bunk and do nothing more than reinforce a work-life culture that is negative and toxic. As I chewed on this sentiment later that night, I thought that instead of just complaining about individuals who spout this rhetoric, that I would offer one simple action step you can take to improve your work-life balance. Here it is.

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The Work-Life War that Needs to End and How Managers Can End It (Part I)

Work-life balance is a pain point for a lot of people. It seems that no matter what the industry, no matter who the person, there is always a reaction of ‘oh yea, I need help with that” every time I mention my speaking and research interests in the area.

There is a second, almost as common and often more uncomfortable reaction I get and it goes something like this:

“Work-life balance? Yea it’s important but I don’t matter because I don’t have kids or a spouse.” Continue reading “The Work-Life War that Needs to End and How Managers Can End It (Part I)”

4 Ways to Truly Appreciate Graduate Students All Year Round

This week marks the end Graduate and Professional Student Appreciation Week (GPSAW) across the country.  Although I am biased, graduate and professional students are a significant part of the campus ecosystem. Graduate students serve as instructors, administrators (a 20 hr. a week Grad Assistant is just a ½ employee in my book), innovate thought, and add a more mature dynamic on our campuses.

Taking time to celebrate, thank, acknowledge, and pamper grad students is something all campuses should have done this week. But what happens after this week? Do we go back to forgetting them and focusing on undergraduates again? I hope not. Here are 4 suggestions you can implement on your campus to make sure graduate students are appreciated and heard beyond the free donuts, massages, and swag that comes with GPSAW.

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