At 1MFWF, we always want to highlight work that’s happening around the country and across the globe pertaining to work flexibility. While our own blog features regular contributions from experts on this topic, we also keep an eye out for great articles elsewhere on the web. Here are some recent items not to miss.
In Sweden, an Experiment Turns Shorter Workdays Into Bigger Gains
Liz Alderman, The New York Times, May 20
Among the many types of workplace wellness policies implemented by Sweden, including parental leave and child care, is a new kind of flexible work, one that limits workdays to just six hours without any corresponding pay cut. Swedish companies involved in a pilot program are reporting reduced turnover and higher productivity. Read more about how employees, families, taxpayers, and government are all impacted by this workday experiment: In Sweden, an Experiment Turns Shorter Workdays Into Bigger Gains.
How work-life balance became work all the time
Alex Laughlin, The Washington Post, May 20
Sheryl Sandberg has used her “Lean In” philosophy to inspire women to reach their full potential in both their personal and professional lives. But in an apologetic Mother’s Day post, Sandberg shares her account of how difficult it is to be both an engaged parent and an accomplished professional. How work-life balance became work all the time explores the unique struggles of being a working parent, and the shortfalls that the “lean in” philosophy has for having not only a good career, but a good life as well.
Down With Face Time! A Flexibility Manifesto
Romy Newman, Huffpost Business, May 11
Romy Newman, president and co-founder of Fairygodboss, shares results from their recent study showing that women, non-mothers included, value flexibility in the workplace over just about any other benefit, including a “nice boss” and career advancement opportunities. Newman notes that the value of office “face time” is quickly becoming obsolete, and calls for widespread adoption of flexibility for all employees. Read more: Down With Face Time! A Flexibility Manifesto,
The plan to ban work emails out of hours
Hugh Schofield, BBC News, May 11
A “disconnection clause” has been recommended by the French government as an addendum to existing labor laws in hopes that it will eliminate some of the work related stress that is rampant across the country. While France is not the only country to experience an upsurge in this need to stay permanently connected, they are the only country, so far, so intervene. Read more about this plan to ban work emails out of hours.
Better Pay or More Flexibility: It Doesn’t Have to Be a Trade-off
Knowledge@Wharton, May 11
It’s becoming less of a professional taboo and more of the norm for professionals to request a range of alternative work arrangements. Stew Friedman, director of 1MFWF supporter the Wharton Work/Life Integration Project shares, “We are seeing all kinds of innovations in the structure of work that are [becoming] normative.” Moreover, flexibility does not have to come at the expense of salary or career advancement. Read more about the latest trends in flex: Better Pay or More Flexibility: It Doesn’t Have to Be a Trade-off.
Are ‘Meternity’ leaves for non-parents a good idea?
Brigid Schulte, CNN Opinion, May 7
“Meternity” is a new novel by Meghann Foye that has sparked controversy in the debate for work/life balance, specifically maternity leave, as it features a woman who fakes a pregnancy to experience “blissful time” to herself. Brigid Schulte, director of the Better Life Lab at New America, chimes into the conversation by noting that the real problem in the U.S. is our work-first culture and lack of a healthy work/life balance. Read more: Are ‘Meternity’ leaves for non-parents a good idea?
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