November 29, 2018
The blurring of traditional work day hours and encroachment on our evenings and weekends have made work-life balance harder to achieve for many professionals.
It’s time to stop chasing a mythical balance because that implies that when one succeeds, the other suffers, says Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.
Struggling to achieve an actual balance leads to a “debilitating” sense of failure in the long run because they’re never going to be perfectly aligned and it creates a mentality that one is always competing against the other, Bezos said recently in remarks published by Business Insider.
Instead, we should strive for work-life harmony, he says.
Harmony is a more holistic approach that recognizes the interconnectedness and blending of our personal and professional lives.
It also respects the reality that very few of us can focus completely on one or the other at specific windows of time. Certain projects and emails need to be handled immediately, even if it’s 9 o’clock at night. Sometimes a sick child or a doctor’s appointment or plumbing emergency at home means we’re going to miss a meeting.
That’s perfectly fine, says Bezos. The billionaire entrepreneur famously refuses to set an alarm clock to wake up in the morning, makes time to eat breakfast with his family most mornings and avoids scheduling formal meetings as much as possible.
“If I am happy at home, I come into the office with tremendous energy,” Bezos said. “And if I am happy at work, I come home with tremendous energy. You never want to be that guy — and we all have a coworker who’s that person — who, as soon as they come into a meeting, they drain all the energy out of the room. You want to come into the office and give everyone a kick in their step.”
Visionary leadership and a stronger workplace culture can help companies cultivate work-life harmony for all of their employees. Let’s talk about how a well-designed workplace strategy can support that. You can contact us here.