As far as we know, no-one's last words have been "I wish I'd spent more time at the office", but in the fast-paced, round-the-clock business world of the twenty-first century many managers and employees find themselves spending more waking hours at work than they do at home. Putting in extra hours over and above those you are contracted to fulfil may eventually be accepted by your employer as the norm. As a consequence you lose valuable personal time with your partner, family and friends, may become less personally effective and risk increased tiredness, stress and ultimately burnout.
Leaders, managers and employees who feel that they need to redress their work/life balance will gain significant benefit from Maguire Training's Personal Effectiveness & Managing the Work/Life Balance course. This two-day course helps delegates to regain control of their time and equips them with the necessary organisational and time-management skills to enable them to achieve their optimum work/life balance.
Whilst formal training is the best way to acquire the relevant knowledge and strategies to establish and maintain your ideal work/life balance and personal effectiveness, there are a number of steps you can take in order to get the ball rolling. Here, Maguire Training suggests a few of the ways in which you can help to get your work/life balance back on track.<span< p="">
- Leave work when it's time to leave work
If you're contracted to finish work at 5pm, make it known to as many of your colleagues and superiors as possible that you need to be away by 5. Prioritise your day's workload accordingly and politely request that any meeting which you are required to attend are scheduled in accordance with your need to leave on time. Whilst this approach may be initially challenging, after a few days it will become accepted that you leave work at the time you?re supposed to.
- Don't be afraid to say 'no'
Neither guilt nor a misplaced sense of duty are sufficiently good reasons to take on additional tasks that you don't have time to carry out without working longer days. Politely decline requests, give your reason and if possible suggest alternative ways of achieving the task at hand such as breaking it down into smaller tasks and delegating them.
- Manage your work time as effectively as possible
Planning, prioritising and creating to-do lists, coupled with the removal of distractions and time-wasting activities (but not breaks or lunch) will enable you to keep your workload under control. Effective time management at work means more free time to enjoy elsewhere.
- Explore alternative working patterns
Thanks to high-speed communication networks and the internet, jobs are becoming increasingly location independent which means you may have the opportunity to work from home. If not, find out whether your company offers other work/life balance-friendly arrangements such as flexi-time, a compressed working week, job-sharing or shift work that may suit you better.
- Draw a dividing line between your personal life and your work life
Those same modern communication technologies make it easy to check work email, update the status of projects, write and send memos and complete other tasks when you're away from the workplace. Make the decision that all work-related activities end the moment you step out of the building and stick to it.
- Make the most of your non-working time
Use your free personal time to fully connect with loved ones and friends and to indulge in pastimes and activities that provide a complete escape from your working world. Be sure to rest and relax whenever you feel the need in order to be fully recharged and motivated for your next day at work.
Courtesy of Maguire Training's easy-to-use and innovative E-learning system, delegates can gain all of the benefits of Personal Effectiveness & Managing the Work/Life Balance and a host of equally valuable courses as on-line training, allowing convenient study via any internet connected device.