Over the years, the concept of work-life balance has transitioned. Rather than life and work being separate, there is now quite a bit of crossover. With nearly 130 million people working full-time in the U.S., the lines between home and office are becoming more blurred.
More and more companies are taking note of this, and making efforts to implement elements that are important to employees outside of work, such as wellness and social spaces. And some companies, like TOMS, are providing opportunities where employees can pursue their passions as part of their work. At their core, some of the more remarkable businesses have a greater purpose in mind. They also want talent whose personal interests align with their business goals.
Happy space happy employees, right? Here are three secrets to creating and having both.
1. Allow employees to untether
Thanks to technological advances, we no longer have to be chained to our desk all day. By allowing employees to untether, you are empowering them to choose where they work. You're also enabling them to take charge of their own productivity.
By creating spaces for quiet, focused activities as well as for collaboration, employees are equipped to do their best work. If you need some focus time, grab a spot in a quiet phone booth. If you have a group meeting, settle into the communal table in the break room where everyone can grab a coffee, relax and be themselves.
2. Promote workplace wellness
Good, clean air quality. Access to plenty of well-filtered water. Comfortable ergonomic chairs and adjustable monitors. These are all wellness strategies that enhance your employees' health and well-being. Providing healthy snacks, encouraging breaks to take a walk in the sunshine, and incorporating natural light and material can truly make all the difference in your employees' disposition, and therefore their efficiency.
According to a study by the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM), 72 percent of companies stated that their wellness resources made an impact. Focusing on employees' health and well-being not only makes them healthier, but more passionate and productive, too. It's a win-win strategy.
3. Buy into your culture
Having a strong culture encourages employee engagement and builds a robust company brand. But 52 percent of organizations found that management buy-in was the biggest barrier to strengthening their corporate cultures. How can you expect your employees to get excited about their culture when it's apparent that the leaders are not invested? Recently I visited an office that had a custom "What I Dream Of" wall. This was embellished with sticky notes where employees had shared their dreams, and I could feel the culture the moment I walked in.
This simple example demonstrates just how creating a workplace that expresses your culture and is on brand can enhance team behaviors. It becomes a constant reminder they have made the right choice - resulting in confident, positive outlooks. By designing an environment that incorporates wellness, promotes company culture and gives workers the freedom to untether, companies can create happy spaces for happy employees.