Tag Archives: work life balance

How to Ask for a Reduction in Hours

Maybe when you started this job you thought it was going to be a standard nine to five. Or perhaps you want to spend more time at home with your family.

Regardless of reason, you’re working more hours than you anticipated or want to work, and it’s getting in the way of your schoolwork, family time, or other responsibilities. As a salaried employee, it’s time to have a frank discussion with your manager about cutting back your hours.

But how do you start that conversation? We’re here to help. (more…)

Traditional 9 to 5 or Flexible Hours?

What’s better?

There’s been a large trend recently in companies shifting to a more flexible work schedule. In Japan, for example, a 4-day workweek experiment saw productivity jump 40%.

As noted by Upwork, Apple hires “At Home Advisors” to help out with customer support, while Dell offers a “Connected Workplace” that includes a wealth of flexible work options, from remote work to flextime and more.

But are flexible work schedules better for everyone? And what are the advantages? Let’s dig in.

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Keeping Your Work and Personal Lives Separate

You want to be the best employee you can be. Professional, organized, and enthusiastic. But you also want to be you with your own opinions and personal life.

Reconciling these two worlds is difficult. How many email accounts do you need? What about social media? Do you add all of your work colleagues on Facebook? Do you really need a LinkedIn?

We’re here to answer all your question. Let’s get started.

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Life Lessons from John Wooden

Basketball in HoopOne of the most revered coaches in the history of sports is John Wooden, nicknamed “The Wizard of Westwood,” who won 10 NCAA national championships in his 12-year career as head coach at the University of California Los Angeles.

Wooden, who passed away in June 2010, left behind a legacy as one of the most successful basketball coaches in the history of the sport, but he also left behind a blueprint on how to become the best and most successful person one can be.

Today, athletes, business leaders, employees and countless others follow these life lessons from Coach Wooden in their own lives. Below are five quotes from this great basketball icon that ring as true in today’s world as they did when he first spoke them.

“Perform at your best when your best is required. Your best is required each day.”

As one of the top blocks on Coach Wooden’s “Pyramid of Success,” competitive greatness does not mean beating everyone else, but doing your absolute best every day. No matter how small the job, excellence is earned by doing the most thorough work each day, every day. The best work is done by those who practice their skills, release excuses and do important things, even when the odds seem daunting.

“It’s the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen.”

Even the most menial tasks at a job serve a purpose, and those little things add up to create big results. Nothing a person does should be considered boring or insignificant. Strategic planning and execution of major projects also includes the little details that can make or break a triumph. Leaders can learn to appreciate their employees from the ground up by keeping this quote from Wooden in mind. The man who cleans the offices at night is as big a part of a company’s success as the top salesperson.

“You can’t let praise or criticism get to you. It’s a weakness to get caught up in either one.”

People inevitably try to downplay someone else’s success or belittle another person. Friends, families, competitors and enemies are all guilty of this at one point or another.  Wooden’s advice is to stop focusing on criticisms and focus on helpful critique. If a complaint is valid, that complaint can become a learning opportunity and a chance to improve. On the flip side, chasing flattery can be almost as debilitating as giving into criticism. Many people become dependent on praise, chasing the ego rub instead of true greatness.

“Don’t let making a living deprive you of making a life.”

Too many people trade daily enjoyment for achievement, but the key to true success is having both. Also called “work/life balance,” most people find happiness when they achieve something important and enjoy other aspects of life. Working is a way to earn a wage, but successful people also find delight while accomplishing goals and victories through their job.

“If I am through learning, I am through.”

In life, education is never finished. Most successful business owners, entrepreneurs, teachers or employees are constantly on the search for knowledge and ways to improve. Life always offers up opportunities to learn something new, whether it’s a new skill set, another language, a new hobby or a new perspective on life. Not expanding a base of knowledge or experience leads to stagnation and boredom. Continuous learning is powerful, so take life’s lessons from Coach Wooden to begin building your legacy.

 

Father’s Day: Recognizing Fathers in the Workplace

The first Father’s Day is believed to have originated in the state of Washington on July 19, 1910. Yet, the day did not become a nationwide holiday until President Richard Nixon made it official in 1972, nearly 60 years after Mother’s Day was declared a holiday.

Father’s Day will be celebrated this Sunday, June 19. In honor of the annual celebration, we’d like to recognize all fathers while taking a deeper look at those in the workplace.

Fathers in the Workforce
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, about 93% of all men with children under age 18 participated in the labor force in 2015. The Pew Research Center also revealed that in 46% of two-parent households, both mom and dad work full time. This is up from 31% in 1970.

Work-life Balance
With that many working fathers, the recent results from a Pew Research Center survey should come as no surprise. Just like mothers in the workplace, fathers often find it challenging to balance family and work. Yet, a large portion of those surveyed said they feel like they have to work to provide for their family. The survey also found that men want to be able to spend more time with their children and enjoy sharing the child raising responsibilities.

Here at Movin’ On Up, we salute our associates who are working fathers and wish all of them a happy Father’s Day!

Are you a working dad? Do you have tips for other working dads? Let us know in the comments section below!

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Movin’ On Up is brought to you by Express Employment Professionals.

Tips for Surviving Today’s Changing Workforce

Changing Workforce_blogToday’s workforce is in the middle of a transformation that is altering the way employees, new and old, work on a daily basis. With technological advances, a shift in the overall age and work style of employees, and more, it can be tough to discern how to effectively manage one’s career and be an effective employee. But, never fear! We’ve compiled some tips to help you navigate this unique time in your career and survive in today’s changing workforce.

Be flexible.
The workplace of today is not the same as it was in years past. You may end up at a company where shared workspaces and collaborative meetings are the norm, rather than individual cubicles or offices. Work schedules may also be different from what you’re used to or would expect. Instead of being frustrated or thrown off by the way companies are evolving, keep your stress levels in check to stay productive in this ever-changing environment.

Take advantage of training.
Whether it’s an internship or company-offered training, don’t shy away from opportunities to learn and add value to an organization. As baby boomers retire and younger generations fill those roles, employees and job seekers should bridge the skills gap by taking it upon themselves to be trained and ready to step into those shoes.

Keep a balanced life while working hard.
As younger generations move into roles, there is a stronger desire for improved work-life balance. Regardless of what your employer promotes, keep in mind that you will still have to put in the hours to work your way up the company ladder. The commitment to work hard isn’t a quality employers expect to see disappear. If your company does promote a strong work-life balance, be sure to utilize it without abusing it. Your life outside of work is full of people who are important to you, and finding a good balance will keep you happy in years to come, regardless of change.

Develop your skills.
Today’s changing workforce requires employees to be able to think critically across disciplines, while also being able to communicate effectively. As you adapt, it’s important to consider what skills you bring to the table. People skills are just as important as business and technical skills, and companies will want to know what value you can add to their business.

If you’re wondering where to get started, one option may be to engage a mentor or someone who can help develop those soft skills and give you guidance on achieving success. With the generational variety in the workplace now, it’s a great time to build relationships and learn from other age groups.

Get connected.
As social media continues to grow, it’s important to utilize these platforms to promote your professional brand and establish key career connections. While a traditional resume is still required for most job applications, a social profile promoting your skills and accomplishments can go a long way, as well. With the easy access, you can use social media to network, share your ideas and work examples, and demonstrate your personality to potential employers before they even meet you.

A word of caution: Be smart about what you’re posting on social media. For tips on how to clean up your social media accounts to garner positive attention, view this Movin’ On Up article from April.

Can you think of other ways to survive today’s changing workforce? Share with us in the comments section below!

Movin’ On Up is brought to you by Express Employment Professionals.