Marketing Week recently ran its annual Career and Salary Survey to determine the key people issues facing the marketing industry, and surprise, surprise - it revealed the importance of flexible working to the majority of those surveyed.
Helping employees achieve a better work life balance has to be a core part of any retention strategy today, and it is not just millennials that are interested in their own well-being but all generations. Flexible working does not just mean home-working but recognising that everyone works in a different way. If increasing productivity and performance are 2018 goals then maybe it is worth being open-minded about how, when and where your people work.
But that does mean giving careful thought to certain issues:
- setting clear goals and trusting your employees to deliver them
- employees need to know that raising work life balance issues does not impact on their progression
- showing that 'presenteeism' is not your style
- being a role model to show it is ok to work from home or at different times
- considering if you have the right technology to allow flexible working and determining protocols
Lastly, think about other options to show that you are aware of the need for balance - maybe career breaks, or mindfulness sessions. In other words be open to new ideas but be very clear about the end game, creating the right environment so that everyone is comfortable and contributing commercially.
Alongside the option to take a career break, counselling and wellbeing are becoming more important to marketers. Some 14.4% of those surveyed have the option to receive counselling through their current employer, though only 2.1% have used this service in the past year. The survey also shows that 10.2% of respondents have mindfulness support open to them, but just 3.8% have used it in the past 12 months. Work done over the past year to open up the topic of mental health and encourage people to ask for help should help improve these numbers, says Markey. “Wellness and mindfulness are really good aids in life and I think we should do more to encourage it and to role model that as well.