How to encourage a better work-life balance

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Health Assured team

15 March 2024

Since the Covid-19 pandemic, work-life balance has been a point of discussion. We saw a rapid increase in remote and hybrid working and a boost in mental health awareness across the UK, urging the work-life balance conversation.

According to research, 58% of people are more likely to go for a job that promote a good work-life balance over an attractive salary, a stark difference to 2019. It is clear that people’s expectations for work have shifted dramatically to suite mental health improvement and better balance between private and professional life.

What is work-life balance?

Work-life balance refers to the demand of someone’s personal life in comparison to the demand of their professional life. It’s the ability to comfortably and happily accommodate time to both professional and personal lives without compromising each other.

In a European Quality of Life survey reported that after the financial crash of 2008, 27% of women and 23% of men felt that they were too tired to cope with their personal responsibilities after work. Clearly people were starting to notice that they needed a better work-life balance.

Knowing what a good work-life balance is will be entirely unique to each person and what their priorities are in their professional and personal life.

A good work-life balance may look like being able to complete deadlines without stress while sustaining time for personal hobbies or having flexible working hours to be able to take your children to school.

Whatever makes a person happy in their personal and professional life will constitute their preferred work-life balance.

Good work-life balance can become strained when prolonged pressure or stress starts to compromise personal or professional life, or both.

Importance of good work-life balance

Over the last few years, more people are looking for balance in their personal and professional lives, so they can enjoy life and feel fulfilled in all aspects of life. With 47% of people seeing work-life balance as a unique selling point for job roles, workers are no longer willing to compromise their personal life for their career and vice versa.

It is important for leaders to understand and consider the work-life balance of their people and make reasonable adjustments to suit those needs.

Good work-life balance benefits organisations as well as people by boosting efficiency, morale, staff retention, and productivity. It is also known to reduce pressure, absenteeism, stress, and burnout in personal and professional lives.

Supporting your people in finding a better work-life balance increases productivity and creativity for your organisation and better mental health for them.

How leaders can encourage a good work-life balance for their people

1. Offer Mental Health Support

Mental health support offers a safe space for people to speak about their challenges without judgement, receive different perspectives from a trained counsellor, and help with resolving complex problems. With better mental health, your people will be able to focus on their role, your organisation during work hours, and balancing their private and professional life. Many organisations offer Employee Assistance Programmes (EAP), which provides free and confidential access to mental health support for your people.

2. Encourage time-off

Holidays and taking time-off is essential in the workplace. Without it, we would see people stressed and burnt-out. It allows your people to rest, declutter their mind, and have better mental clarity.

Encourage your people to take their allotted time off by emphasising the significance of having holiday periods away from the workplace.

3. Offer flexible working schedules

Since the pandemic, more organisations are offering flexible working schedules, offering more time for your people to be able to balance their professional and personal life much easier.

By offering flexible working schedules, such as hybrid or flexi time, your people have more time to do things that will benefit their work-life balance, such as life admin, seeing their children, and socialising with friends.

4. Ask your people for guidance

Your people are your greatest asset in many ways, this is also true for understanding their needs.

Creating an in-house and personal survey for your people to fill out, detailing their needs and wishes for a better work-life balance is a great way to get some insight so you can be more proactive in creating these adjustments.

Support your employees with an EAP

With a Health Assured Employee Assistance Programme (EAP), we can offer you practical advice and support when it comes to dealing with suicide, anxiety, depression and better mental health in he workplace and how to improve your work-life balance.

Our Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) provides guidance and supports your employees with their mental health in the workplace and at home. We can help you create a safe, productive workspace that supports all.

We support your employees' mental wellbeing with any problems they might be facing in their professional or personal lives with our 24-hour counselling helpline.


Find out more about EAPs


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