The Irish government has generously acknowledged that we all work too hard and have declared today, March 1st, to be “Work Life Balance Day”. In order to help us out they have… thank the maker… created a web site! I feel much better now.
The Work Life Balance web site has lots of information, but the most helpful thing on the site by far is their 142 page report which includes qualitative results for employers and employees. Having a very short attention span, I jumped straight to the Policy Measures/Interventions on the employee section. I examined the 10 bullet points find the holy grail of… uh… doing stuff to not work too hard while keeping up the respect of coworkers and continuing to earn promotions… and took away these two things from the list that I’ll need to address:
- “Change in the culture of organizations, i.e. male attitudes […]”
Given we have no women on our team as of yet, I’m going to work with my coworkers to rotate the responsibility of having a female attitude. With our team of 9 I think a good balance would be two or three people each week taking on the role, bringing in the much needed female qualities our team lacks (empathy, fashion sense and a general distaste for fart jokes). They won’t, however, need to wear a skirt… that would be silly.
- “Remove the mythology behind work-life balance arrangements.”
This is going to be a tougher one to implement. To date we’ve been able to keep people slaving away at their computers with the threat of a Minotaur which roams the halls until 7pm. Granted, it also means I can no longer go home early every Thursday using the excuse “Sorry, I need to pick my Unicorn up for school, my wife is at her mermaid husbandry class.”
Speaking of husbandry… women in Ireland get 26 weeks of maternity leave. Their husbands? 1-3 days. Uh, oh… I feel some male attitude coming back.