Don’t ruin your holidays – or your business

Tom Homer, head of EMEA, Global Enterprise and Services, for Australian communications company Telstra, gives his top tips on ensuring employees have work life balance.


According to research by insurance company Simply Business, small business (SMB) owners are finding it increasingly difficult to juggle their family’s summer holidays with work pressures – with a fifth of those surveyed not taking a single day off this summer.

But there is a lesson here for all of us. Every company and corporation has a responsibility to ensure its employees get the most from their job, both in and out of the office.

Of course, technology makes solving this problem much simpler and at Telstra, we have made it a priority to empower our employees to work in the way which best suits them.

Here are my top tips for how to make sure the work life balance is achieved and not at the compromise of your business’ bottom line:

  1. Be flexible: Flexibility shows you care – employees are more willing to go the extra mile if you show you value their life outside of the office. Nowadays, there are few businesses that need to have their staff operate from 9-5. Allowing changeable start and finish times, where business activity allows, will mean staff can work to their own schedules and become more productive.
  1. Let’s get virtual: If an employee has to work late hours to meet a deadline or has an early morning conference call to attend, remote working could make this much more manageable. I know I make the most of this when I go away, missing the holiday traffic by travelling a day early and working from my weekend destination rather than the office.
  1. Listen and learn: The lines of personal and professional are blurring with the increased use of technology and mobile devices. Look to your employees to find out which communication and productivity tools and apps will help them get their jobs done faster and generate better business outcomes. Explore the use of personalised IT environments to reap the benefits rather than enforce blanket restrictions on their use.
  1. Get your head into the clouds: Collaborative, flexible working is enabled by access to information when and how you want it, in a seamless and integrated environment. If you’re not already talking about the cloud – it’s time to have the conversation.
  1. Lead by example: Only with the commitment of everyone on the team will a true cultural change occur. This starts with the leadership team trusting and encouraging employees as well as providing the right tools and technology to succeed.

We’re all responsible for making the future way of work today’s reality. See what changes you can make to achieve this.

Tom Homer_image 1

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