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work-life balance

Separation anxiety: Prepare for employee exits

The recent death of Justice Antonin Scalia highlights the duality of employee exits. For exits like Justice Scalia’s, it is unlikely that within hours of death, friends and family ponder the vacuum and replacement challenges the employer will face. Exits like Justice Scalia’s may precipitate introspection by remaining employees – resolutions to focus on family and work-life balance; or a realization that regardless of the power or indispensability of a role, in the end it really is “just a job”, because, as far as we know, we leave it all behind.

 

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Six in ten workers around the world would telecommute full-time

Career advancement website HowDoIBecomeA.net recently featured an infographic on trends in telecommuting around the world. Apparently, one in five workers globally telecommutes frequently, and seven percent of workers work from home every day. Research shows that six in ten workers worldwide would telecommute full-time if their employer allowed it. Why do employers not allow it? In Canada, about 37 percent of workers say their employer needs them to be at their workplace…

 

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Workplace flexiblity outside of Silicon Valley

The recently publicized news regarding the ban of telecommuting at Yahoo has ensued in a debate about the benefits of flexible work from home versus the requirement to come into work. However the first thought to cross my mind was that this flexible work arrangement only applies to a very small and privileged sector of employees. For example, working in healthcare, I am very aware of the fact that this debate doesn’t apply to nurses or personal support workers.

 

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Returning from parental leave and accommodating family status

After 20 weeks of parental leave, I’m back in front of my computer, checking my email, catching up on workplace changes, putting together a schedule and generally getting back into the swing of things. Per the law, my employer has reinstated me to the same position I left (at the same wage), although with some accommodation to ease my transition, and I will no doubt be expected to perform up to my previous standard. I know I’ll need the help!

 

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Employee burnout: how employers can help avoid it

Is there a law that says employers must prevent employee burnout? No, not really, but occupational health and safety legislation across Canada provides that an employer must take every precaution reasonable in the circumstances to protect a worker. That could include ensuring that an employee does not suffer from full blown burnout. When employers assist in this regard, they are also ensuring that their workplaces remain healthy and productive, and have higher morale.

 

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New provisions for family caregiver leave

On December 8, 2011, the Ontario Liberal Government introduced Bill 30, entitled the Family Caregiver Act. This Act intends to create an additional entitlement to a leave of absence from work while the employee’s job is protected. The proposed Act will provide for an unpaid leave of absence for up to eight weeks to allow an employee to care for a sick relative.

 

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Do we place too much emphasis on stress at work?

Seventy-three percent of working Canadians experience almost daily stress in their jobs, according to a recent study by Statistics Canada. That’s approximately 10 million people, or nearly one-third of Canada’s population. More than one-quarter of workers say their job is “quite a bit” or “extremely” stressful; close to half say they experience “a bit” of stress. But where is all the stress coming from, and is it affecting workers’ productivity?

Morever, should employers be aiming for stress-free workplaces?

 

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What all employers can learn from Google

Google has been rated the world’s most attractive employer in two categories, business and engineering, by Universum. The rankings were based on responses from 160,000 career seekers. So what can employers learn from Google to improve their own attractiveness?

 

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Reduced hours of work and job sharing – an idea suited for North America?

In a recent Globe and Mail video, author Juliet Schor discusses how reducing work hours might be the answer to some of the problems facing Canada’s workforce. Schor mentions that having employees work shorter hours decreases unemployment rates, lowers greenhouse emissions, and improves quality of life.

 

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Volunteering: a pleasure or a burden?

After I joined the board of directors at a not-for-profit arts organization, it didn’t take long for me to wonder how I’d balance my new obligations with the rest of my day-to-day life. I’d volunteered before, but only informally. Now I have regular responsibilities, mainly meetings and fundraising. I’ll probably invest 70 to 80 hours volunteering with the organization this year. It’s a worthy cause, but it’s also worthwhile to question the time commitment.

 

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Women’s expectations in the workplace may play critical role in how they are treated at work

Canadian women starting their careers still expect to earn considerably less than men, wait longer then men for promotions, and have lower salaries after five years of working, according to a soon-to-be-released study. This despite the fact that some believe we are reaching the point of equality in the workplace. Why is this happening? Why do women still have these expectations?

 

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Election fever! Who’s got it?

It’s that exciting time again, when somewhat more than half of Canadians over 18 will come together to select the people who will govern us until the next impassable crisis of parliamentary confidence. For some, it’s a celebratory time when we Canadians demonstrate our democratic will. For others, it’s a cynical time (I know: how can it be?) when incumbents and hopefuls tell us what we want to hear just to win their seats in Ottawa and their cushy benefits.

 

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Work-life balance incentives

Quebec launches a work-life balance initiative that is said to be unique in all the world. Let’s hope it catches on in other provinces and territories.

 

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The season of stress?

What types of pressures you’re feeling this season—both at and away from work—and how do you deal with them? My coping method is to pray desperately for vacation (four days away!) and think about how great I’ll feel in the new year.

 

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Slaw: Human rights tribunal defends family values: work-life balance ruling

While not every childcare need gives rise to an employer obligation to accommodate, the employee argued that her complicated and unpredictable schedule made it impossible to care for her children. Moreover, she knew that…

 

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