We live in a flexible world. One in which social media and improved technology has made keeping in touch faster and easier than ever before… and it’s not over yet! So has all of this progress (some will debate that the growth of technology equates to progress, but that’s another debate!) actually helped or hindered our everyday work / life balance? What about a flexi style of working? Is that option appealing to you?
As social media and technology has made working from home, or working remotely, more practical and a realistic option for employers to consider, the lines of work and personal life have become, perhaps inevitably, blurred. The pros of working flexibly may seem appealing initially (more freedom, no commute), but many contacts of mine are starting to see the down sides; being “always on tap”, missing the peer group / colleague interactions which a “normal” place-of-work offers; those moments by the water cooler where you can often have a two minute catch up with a colleague. Those things disappear with the increased flexibility of working remotely; Skype just isn’t the same.
So it’s a balancing act then, between your career aspirations, your employers leadership style/trust re your working from home, for example. Your aspirations for your family and your future are also major considerations of course. My own take on this is that we’ve simply adjusted to the new way of doing things; from the mobile status updates, to the calls from bosses outside of contracted working hours. It’s a judgement call you have to make nowadays. Does a flexible work/life balance mean we’re happier? I’m raising many questions here; questions which can run and run, and I’m happy to receive your views via the usual social networking channels, and I’m sure the debate will carry on for some time to come!
Some of the following may provide you with discussion points around work/life balance, and indeed whether flexible working is for you:
What’s best for you and your circumstances depends on the nature of your work and is a deeply personal choice, but obviously if you’re working remotely the ability to connect into your office systems is fundamental, as is the knowledge to make all of the technology do what you want it to do!
I speak to so many people considering either flexi working, or going it alone as part of a career change strategy, or portfolio working. It’s all good, but there are so many variables, so I suggest you do a proper pros and cons list, and be brutally honest with yourself if flexi working working is for you.
If you decide to make a change, then good luck with your new career working arrangements!
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