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Work-Life Balance Whether you're motivated by spreading new ideas or retiring early, just remember that your company is nothing but people

By Hamid Farooqui

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We 'll never see an entrepreneur who has extra time to spare. Getting a business off the ground, keeping it afloat, and building a brand -- each of these is a more-than-full-time job.

And yet, every entrepreneur -- and his or her employees -- also has a personal life, family, hobbies, and professional development needs that can't be neglected.

It's not an easy balance, you'll meet plenty of entrepreneurs burning the candle at both ends -- a bad sign for both employers and employees. A few tips for those looking to improve work-life balance:

An Employer

1: Understand What Makes Your Employees Tick.

Get to know your team members as real people. Of course, you're hiring people with skill sets that benefit your company, but cross-checking for a cultural fit is a critical and never-ending activity. What are their priorities, interests, and commitments? Just remember: There's a fine line between being interested and being nosy. Respect everyone's privacy and keep confidential information to yourself.

2: People Have Lives and You Should, Too.

You're a role model. Whether you intend it or not, employees will mirror your actions. If you're working late or shooting off a barrage of emails on holidays, your behaviour sets the culture of your organization. Be sure you're setting the example you want others to follow.

As An Employee

3: Remember: You're Kind of a Big Deal.

Every successful organization works because of its people. When everything's running smoothly, it's because everyone is playing a part. Rather than a cog in a machine, though, your unique blend of skills and talents makes you a critical contributor to your company.

An example: Employees who don't feel like they're contributing are way less likely to stick around. this happens pretty often when hiring new team members: They left their old job because they felt they weren't making a difference. Here, we really grow based on our employees' talents, so we want everyone to know they matter.

4: Take Care of Yourself.

Because you're a big deal, you need to protect your investment: Your physical health, your mental well-being, and your overall work-life balance are your responsibility. Just like overdoing a workout might seem like a clever idea at the time, overworking has its consequences, too. Nobody benefits if you're sick or burned out, and this always good to see team members step up to take on new projects and responsibilities. Still, we should rely on employees to know when enough is enough.

Overall

5: Communication Counts.

Whether you're an employer or employee, we can't over-emphasize how important communication can be in crafting work-life balance. Employees need to advocate for their own needs, and employers need to listen and support employees. Clear policies and expectations can be helpful, but it's really the personal connections and conversations that keep your organization healthy.

It's exciting to be an entrepreneur. Whether you're motivated by spreading new ideas or retiring early, just remember that your company is nothing but people. When your people burn out, your company will, too. Focus on balance, and your team and your business will benefit.

Hamid Farooqui

CEO, SOGO Survey

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