The quality of our support networks and relationships has an important bearing on our success. I am grateful that I had amazing support and encouragement to choose my desired path. It came from parents, my husband, In-laws, my son and friends. I have worked with much admired organizations and fantastic people through-out my career which has been another blessing. The limitations were only professional in terms of less exposure to the world outside my domain as compared to my male colleagues. This was due to the almost non-existent networking opportunities for women, lack of access to mentors and no knowledge about the importance of building a personal brand while being very intentional about progressing faster on one's desired career journey.
I feel any practical conversation around work-life balance firstly has to feel like a win-win for all stakeholders. Hence, it must start with alignment on the organisations purpose, values, objectives as well as clarity on the role and expectations from each employee. A genuine interest in the employees well-being, open two-way communication and trust are at the heart for getting the best out of work-balance initiatives. The following are initiatives that gave good results as per my experience;
- Use flexi time and work from home judiciously are considered hygiene but leadership must lead by example here too, by demonstrating balance (I learnt it the hard way!)
- Productivity training for all employees to achieve more in less time and free up time for a life as a lot of time is wasted due to distractions or managers asking for redundant reports
- Involve families and bring them to work on special days so they can appreciate the employee’s role in the organisation and offer more support
- Care enough to watch out for stress or burn-out symptoms as well as major life changes which could require different kind of support
Your Advice For Women:
I have 3 specific action points:
1. Make your career growth and life YOUR responsibility
- Invest time in finding your WHY
- Find opportunities that align with it
- Stay focused on your priorities, confident about your choices
2. Build your personal brand with consistency
- Identify your strengths and build a positioning around that
- Get active on relevant social media with purposeful consistency
- Network to expand your connections and horizons
3. Upskill pro-actively to stay relevant
- Match your skill-sets to your professional goals
- Seek a mentor to get a reality check and guidance
Culture is as important as one's business strategy because it either strengthens or undermines business objectives How important is it to build and sustain a high performance culture in any organization? : It's said, Culture trumps Strategy and experience has shown that it's true. The VUCA world has put new demands on leaders, teams and organizations such as agility, innovation, leveraging technology to work seamlessly across boundaries. This is the first time in our history that all 5 generations will be found at work, possibly even together. Employees could come with different expectations and motivations to work and consumers have become more demanding than ever too in a digitally connected world. So getting the best from everyone will be challenging yet crucial for sustained business results. Defining what High Performance Culture means to a particular organization is the first step and aligning the strategy, people, processes and resources has to follow soon after to bring the rich fruits that a true HPC offers to organizations and employees both.- Gain knowledge by subscribing to various learning mediums.
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