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Achieving work life balance

In the fourth part of our Future of Work series, Peter Taylor Whiffen explores work-life boundaries and how to ensure they stay separate.

There was a time when you could walk out of your office and that would be the end of your working day. But now, that does not seem to be the case. Our craving to be connected and the rise of the 24-hour society means thousands spend hours of leisure time on phones and tablets, checking work emails, browsing through our firm’s social media, answering texts from the boss, researching and sending the reply to a query, finishing off that report.

Many of us take work home with us through choice – or at least have been conditioned to do so, fearing switching off will put us out of the loop, or worse, feeling pressure to always be available to our employer. Colleagues who send us emails late at night must be working, so we should respond to show we are too, right?

The ability to do our work anytime, anywhere, is not a bad thing. In fact, a recent study of figures from the Office for National Statistics projects that half of British employees will be working remotely within the next two years. And the suggestion is that we, and our employers, will thrive because of it. Homeworkers claim to be nearly 20% more productive than their office counterparts, take about half as many days off sick and are generally more loyal employees, according to a survey for Canada Life. And, with the commute not being an issue, firms who encourage home working have a wider pool from which to choose their talent.

This is an extract from the Business & Management Magazine, Issue 269, November 2018. 

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