Human Resources Today

Viewing entries tagged
work-life balance

11 Ways to Support Employees Who Travel for Work

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11 Ways to Support Employees Who Travel for Work

Traveling for work: it can be as exciting as it is tiring and frustrating. And according to the U.S. Travel Association, there will be a slight uptick in business travel over the next few months. 

While some employees may travel once a year, there are others for whom business travel is nearly a way of life. At exaqueo, our team travels to support the needs of our clients. Some of our clients jet set extensively around the world to meet the needs of their companies. From the casual business traveler to the road warrior, what are the best ways organizations can support their employees?

Whether you work for a small non-for-profit or a large, multi-national organization, here are ideas to ease travel stresses, while showing your employees you care. This is especially important for organizations who say they put “employees first” as part of their employer brand.

Read more about how your employee travel tactics can indeed support your broader employer brand strategy.

 

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Talent and HR News Weekly Roundup: All About Culture

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Talent and HR News Weekly Roundup: All About Culture

At exaqueo, we believe that culture is the way in which you work--the norms and values that define who you are as a business and what makes you different. It's how you get work done and the way people are expected to behave. Culture is your foundation and then your build your business around it. That said, here’s the latest news on workplace culture. Enjoy!

1) The Ultimate Guide to Improving Workplace Culture from SnackNation

“Improving workplace culture is a thorny issue for most business leaders. It’s something that they probably know is important, but can’t quite get a handle on. Finance, strategy, product development, operations – those are the tangible, measurable elements of their business.

But Culture? That’s the definition of the “soft stuff,” the stuff they probably skimmed over in business school, the stuff that makes their eyes glaze over whenever speakers bring it up at conferences. However, more and more leaders are learning it’s no coincidence that the biggest, best, and most innovative companies also happen to have great cultures. In fact, so often these companies are great precisely because they have phenomenal workplace cultures…”

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Explore the Upside of Downtime: The State of American Vacation and Employee Engagement

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Explore the Upside of Downtime: The State of American Vacation and Employee Engagement

Project: Time Off recently released their latest report, The State of American Vacation 2016, which provides the most comprehensive look at America’s vacation habits to date. America is at a critical crossroads between taking vacation back or letting it go extinct. With the start of Summer, we wanted to share our insight into why this data is important and how companies can apply our Whole Self Model to influence change in the workplace, specific to employee engagement. Employee's lives outside of work, including vacation time off, are more important than you think. 

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Lean In Meets What to Expect: An Interview with Allyson Downey

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Lean In Meets What to Expect: An Interview with Allyson Downey

Our founder, Susan LaMotte, recently interviewed Allyson Downey, founder of weeSpring and author of Here's the Plan. Here's the Plan offers an inspiring roadmap for working mothers steering their careers through the parenting years. Ironically, Susan and Allyson have much in common -  both are entrepreneurs, MBAs, writers and mothers. In this honest interview, Allyson shares with Susan why having a plan is important for women to thrive in the workplace. This may just be the motivation new mothers need to keep shaking up—and changing—the world!

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Cell phone use at work: What’s acceptable?

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Cell phone use at work: What’s acceptable?

They are ubiquitous. Cell phones. 61% of the global population uses mobile phones, and 25% of the population uses smartphones. Providing many different convenient ways of easy communication - through calls, text messages, emails, social media - Adults spend an average of 58 minutes on their mobile phone a day. And that number is much higher for young adults.

Remember that amount of time isn’t at one sitting, so some of this time on a cell phone is inevitably spent at work. Communicating through these channels is more discreet than on your computer screen. A text message is much more inconspicuous than a phone call which can be heard by your cube mates. This technology is convenient, but are cell phones taking away from productivity at work?

Before taking any action and creating policies around cell phone usage, here are a few things to consider:

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Stop Working, Take Vacation and Set an Example

Image When I read this piece on busyness from Meredith Fineman in Harvard Business Review my immediate reaction was guilty as charged.  She's describing me and one of my worst faults. I'm always busy, always working, and always telling people about it. While I like to think of myself as self-aware (I know many of my greatest strengths and deepest weaknesses) sometimes you need a wake-up call.  That can come in the form of reading, listening, asking ("am I missing something") or the ever-valuable-when-done-right upward feedback.

So where does it come from? Sure, I can harbor much of the blame. So can society, the American business landscape, even #startuplife. Entrepreneurs especially feel the need to be busy all of the time and when things slow, feel a sense of laziness.I won't argue with the value of taking a break. But I will remind you leaders out there: it's also your fault. We're terrible at modeling good behavior, especially when it comes to taking a break.  We push for our team to take vacation, but do we check to see who actually does? It's cool for startups to offer unlimited vacation days, but are any actually required?  We might not expect our teams to answer emails nights and weekends, but we send them anyway.

I last wrote about the importance of role models in my Forbes piece about women in the workplace where I lamented my personal lack of role models in my own career. Part of the problem for me was the workload, the badge of honor that seemed to come with long hours and being busy all the time. I didn't want it then and I don't want it now.

So why do I still do it?

Part of it is the entrepreneurial push and part is the role my business plays in my life. It's an important part of me. But saying I'm busy all the time, or feeling the pressure to always be working doesn't make for better work. So it's time to stop.

I took all of Labor Day weekend off (enjoy my view above).  Every single, solitary second. I didn't plan on it, but the outcome was more than I could have imagined. A clearer head. A fresher perspective. A calmer mind. A motivated Tuesday. And I plan to do it again later this year. Several times. I'll take a cue from my own missteps. This isn't just about working when I want or working all the time. It's the portion of my brain that's occupied with work. It's working smarter and better.

This last quarter of the year has to be productive for all of us, but there's also a ton of holiday and vacation time to be had. I wanted a life as an entrepreneur. In fact, I left the corporate world for it. Now it's time to make sure I don't revert to old habits, and, feel the need to tell everyone all the time.

As for you? Are you guilty even in the slightest? Don't tell me you're too busy to make a change. Be a role model. Model the time off for your team and see real results when they follow in your more relaxed and productive footsteps.

 

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exaqueo is a human resources consultancy that helps startups and high-growth companies build their cultures, employer brands and talent strategies. Contact us to learn more about how we can help you build a workforce that’s aligned with your company culture and develop an employer brand that will allow your business to grow in the right way.

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Forget Work-Life Balance. I Mean It.

I'm pretty sick of the work-life balance argument. It's not one or the other. Or sublime balance all the time. It's flexibility how and when you want it, understanding that working less may mean earning less. But it's your choice. Read my latest Forbes post "Forget Work-Life Balance: Give Us Choices Instead."  I'd also love if you added your comments here and/or on the Forbes site--this is such an important topic for women and men.

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