Project on Work Life Balance

The role of work has changed throughout the world due to economic conditions and social demands.  Originally, work was a matter of necessity and survival.  Throughout the years, the role of “work” has evolved and the composition of the workforce has changed.  Today, work still is a necessity but it should be a source of personal satisfaction as well.  One of the vehicles to help provide attainment of personal and professional goals is work-life benefits and programs.

Are work-life balance programs in existence as a result of a social responsibility to employees or to provide a competitive advantage to employers?

Before we can answer this question, we need to define what work-life balance is.  Many people think of work-life balance only in the framework of what the company does for the individual.  However, work-life balance is a two prong approach.  The other prong of work-life balance, which many individuals overlook, relates to what individuals do for themselves.

According to Jim Bird, “Work-life balance is meaningfulachievement and enjoyment in everyday life.”  The primary way companies can help facilitate work-life balance for their employees is through work-life programs and training.  Achievement and enjoyment at work is a critical part of anyone’s work-life balance.  Furthermore, achievement and enjoyment in the other three quadrants of one’s life (e.g. family, friends and self) is critical as well.