Want Work Flexibility? Here’s How You Can Make a Change

You dutifully show up to work, day in and day out. Although you try hard to get all of your work done, distractions abound at the office. Well-meaning (but uber chatty) coworkers stop at your centrally located cubicle to talk about office politics, while your micromanaging boss hovers over your desk to check up on the status of that project — for the fifth time today. You know that you could be so much more productive at home — and save lots of time and money by eliminating your killer commute — but your job is an in-office one. You’ve often fantasized about asking your boss to allow you to work from home, but there’s no chance he will, right?


While you can look for a remote job, you don’t necessarily have to ditch the job you currently have in order to get a flexible work option — and a better work-life balance. Today, one in three workers say they spend some time working from home, according to a Harris poll this year. And one in five American workers has some sort of flexible working schedule.

Here are some tips from Sara Sutton Fell, founder and CEO of FlexJobs, on how to make it work.

Do your research. Before barging into your boss’ office and demanding to work from home full-time, it’s best to take a slower, more analytical approach. Assess how many of the company’s employees currently work from home, and find out if their position was already a telecommuting one or if they negotiated this workplace perk. If you know that some workers are already working remotely, it can make your own negotiations easier.

Draft a proposal. Create a list of all of your job responsibilities, then note which ones can be successfully accomplished from home. Offer a schedule that shows how you’ll cover your workload from home, and note on your proposal that you already have a home office from which to work. You can even cite examples from previous work experiences that highlight your ability to be a successful telecommuter (such as being able to work independently and your excellent communication skills).

Be flexible. When you meet with your boss to ask about having a flexible schedule, he might not be, well, flexible. So be prepared with various work alternatives. For example, if he doesn’t want you to work from home full-time, you can offer to be in the office 2-3 days a week and work the rest of the time from home. Reassure your boss that you’ll be in constant communication; you can even volunteer to work from home for a month on a trial basis so that you can both get used to the arrangement before you start working remotely permanently. By being flexible and working with your boss, he’ll feel more confident in granting your request to work from home.

Show your support. Showing your support of work flexibility has never been easier thanks to a newly launched initiative, 1 Million for Work Flexibility. In conjunction with companies, organizations and business leaders that are advocating for workplace flexibility, the ultimate goal is to inspire one million people — from millennials, parents and recent college grads alike — to show their support for flexible work schedules. While lending your support on a general scale, you’ll also be kept in the loop with news and related information on ways to get more work flexibility in your life.

But the case for workplace flexibility isn’t just in the office. Outside of the workplace, it’s crucial to share your feelings about flexible schedules, too. Use your social media channels (such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and LinkedIn) to encourage others to support this mission. If enough people voice their opinions, workplace flexibility will no longer be the exception — it will become the norm.

Source: Mashable


10 signs – you are experiencing a burnout..

The American Psychological Association’s David Ballard, PsyD describes job burnout as “an extended period of time where someone experiences exhaustion and a lack of interest in things, resulting in a decline in their job performance.”

“A lot of burnout really has to do with experiencing chronic stress,” says Dr. Ballard, who is the head of the APA’s Psychologically Healthy Workplace Program. “In those situations, the demands being placed on you exceed the resources you have available to deal with the stressors.”

Left unchecked, burnout can wreak havoc on your health, happiness, relationships and job performance. In order to catch burnout and combat it early, it’s important to know what to look out for.

The 10 signs to identify burnouts:

1. Exhaustion

A clear sign of burnout is when you feel tired all the time. Exhaustion can be emotional, mental or physical. It’s the sense of not having any energy, of being completely spent.

2. Lack of Motivation

When you don’t feel enthusiastic about anything anymore or you no longer have that internal motivation for your work, there’s a good chance you’re experiencing burnout. Other ways this manifests? It may be harder to get going in the morning and more difficult to drag yourself into work every day.

3. Frustration, Cynicism and Other Negative Emotions

You may feel like what you’re doing doesn’t matter that much anymore, or you may be disillusioned with everything. You might notice that you feel more generally pessimistic than you used to. While everybody experiences some negative emotions from time to time, it’s important to know when these are becoming unusual for you.

4. Cognitive Problems

Burnout and chronic stress may interfere with your ability to pay attention or concentrate. When we’re stressed, our attention narrows to focus on the negative element that we perceive as a threat. In the short term, this helps us deal with the problem at hand, Dr. Ballard says, “but our bodies and brains are designed to handle this in short bursts and then return to normal functioning. When stress becomes chronic, this narrow focus continues for a long time and we have difficulty paying attention to other things.”

This “fight or flight” tunnel vision can negatively affect your ability to solve problems or make decisions. You might find that you’re more forgetful and have a harder time remembering things.

5. Slipping Job Performance

Not sure whether you’re burnt out? Compare your job performance now to your performance in previous years. Because burnout tends to happen over an extended period of time, taking this long-term view might reveal whether you’re in a temporary slump or experiencing more chronic burnout.

6. Interpersonal Problems at Home and at Work

This tends to play out in one of two ways: (a) You’re having more conflicts with other people, such as getting into arguments, or (b) you withdraw, talking to your coworkers and family members less. You might find that even when you’re physically there, you’re tuned out.

7. Not Taking Care of Yourself

When suffering from burnout, some people engage in unhealthy coping strategies like drinking too much, smoking, being too sedentary, eating too much junk food, not eating enough or not getting enough sleep. Self-medication is another issue and could include relying on sleeping pills to sleep, drinking more alcohol at the end of the day to de-stress or even drinking more coffee to summon up the energy to drag yourself into work in the morning.

8. Being Preoccupied With Work … When You’re Not at Work

Even though you might not be working at a given moment, if you’re expending mental energy mulling over your job, then your work is interfering with your ability to recover from the stresses of your day. In order to recover, you need time to yourself after the actual task stops … and time when you stop thinking about that task altogether.

9. Generally Decreased Satisfaction

This is the tendency to feel less happy and satisfied with your career and with your home life. You might feel dissatisfied or even stuck when it comes to whatever is going on at home, in the community or with your social activities, Dr. Ballard says.

10. Health Problems

Over a long period of time, serious chronic stress can create real health problems like digestive issues, heart disease, depression and obesity.


Looking to Attract Top Talent? Offer This Perk



A study by national talent acquisition and career development firm Mom Corps revealed that nearly three-quarters of the American adults surveyed said flexibility is one of the most important factors they consider when looking for a new job or deciding what company to work for — up more than 10 percentage points from last year.

In addition, 39% of those surveyed have considered leaving or have left a job because it wasn’t flexible enough.


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