Is the Work-Life Balance a Myth?

 In IT news

The emergence of mobility, 24/7connectivity and globalized business has made the concept of a ‘work-life balance’ obsolete. Ironically, technology — often seen as the culprit — can also help restore a sense of balance.

In theory, the concept of “work-life balance” seems to make sense – splitting your days and weeks between a collaborative and connected working life while also enjoying personal activities and leisure time with friends, family, pursuing hobbies, exercise or just watching TV.

“The idea behind “work-life balance” is to offer a connected and social work environment that fosters creativity and career fulfillment – whether engaging remotely or from an office – and also allow for a well-rounded personal life outside of professional responsibilities,” says Ajay Kaul, managing partner of AgreeYa Solutions, a secure mobility and collaboration platform solution.

“In laymen’s terms, in the traditional sense, ‘work-life balance’ means having 40 hours of work followed by unconnected weekends and employees’ share of allotted work leave,” Kaul says.

Work-Life Balance is a Myth

But what if everything you thought you knew about work-life balance was a myth? Alexander Kjerulf, founder of Woohoo, and an international thought leader and author on topics relating to happiness at work, says he believes “work-life balance” as it’s traditionally defined doesn’t actually exist anymore.

“Traditionally, we see work and life as competing activities fighting for our time,” Kjerulf says. “There’s work and then there’s ‘free time,’ implying that work is not free. And the term balance implies that more work automatically means less life. But where I take issue with that is we only have one life – we just happen to live some of it while working and some of it engaged in other activities,” he says.

“Looking at my own life, I certainly don’t see a ‘work life’ and a ‘private life.’ I just see one life, mine, being expressed in different aspects.”

The traditional concept of work-life balance is inaccurate because the evolution of global, knowledge-driven businesses has diminished geographical boundaries and made time zones irrelevant, says AgreeYa’s Kaul.

Consumers expect 24/7/365 service and support, and most enterprises either have already moved to embrace mobility or are making the transition to workforce mobility to enable a more connected, always-on and engaged workforce, Kaul says.

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