Business owners are the happiest of the nation’s workforce, followed by people who work for small companies, according to the Regus annual Work Life Balance Report.
The flexible workspace provider polled 26,000 professionals around the world and logged a worldwide dip in well-being since last year. However, the UK reported increased well-being, up 5 points on the index and ahead of France and Germany, but behind the US. The global picture of well-bring places Mexico, India, Brazil and China above the UK, US and Europe.
The report claimed that the gap between the happiness levels of baby boomers and subsequent generations X and Y is significant. While baby boomers struggle with health and aging parents, generation X and Y workers feel they are more productive at work and enjoy work a third more.
Meanwhile, business owners have been debunked as unhappy workaholics, with the report suggesting lack of control is more of a stress factor than long hours. It also speculated that business owners may be relieved to have survived the financial downturn and are enjoying the challenge of developing their businesses.
The report said: “Organisations need to maintain momentum because research shows that work-life balance is closely connected with business success. One way that businesses can make strides in the right direction is through a greater commitment to flexible working. This is a win-win to help improve workers’ quality of life through reducing stress and related illnesses, while benefiting the business through reductions in fixed office space and improvements in productivity and retention.”
Previous research from Regus has shown that 74% of office workers believe flexible working makes them more productive and helps them redress their work-life balance.
“Flexible working policies play a vital role in improving work life balance, such as offering staff a choice in where and when they work,” says UK Regus CEO John Spencer. “Many innovative employers and entrepreneurs are already doing this – we see our network of business centres used every day by people working flexibly, closer to home. The value that the younger generation in particular place on flexible working should not be underestimated.”
Just under half of respondents think that businesses are making continued progress to cut gruelling commutes (49%).
Image credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/tartanpodcast/