Blog | 03.24.2015

The unbearable likeness of walking out and work life balance

Last week the whole world cheered Patrick Pitchette’s parting note to Google. He was Google’s CFO for the past 7 years and decided to hang up his boots to go backpacking across the globe with his wife. Every employee identified with his problem, and anyone who was struggling with work-life balance instantly empathized. After all, when you are at the top, work takes precedence over life. Pitchette said that work-life balance is a struggle, and a continuous one for that elusive ‘balance’.

Thanks to the increased adoption of smartphone and tablets by the workforce, almost 47% of office going adults believe that their work hours have actually increased. Research points out 1 out of 2 workers in the US put in more than 50 hours of work in a week! 80% of US workers are stressed and 47% of these blame work overload while 20% claim imbalance in their work and life is the root cause of this stress.

It’s hard to ignore these numbers. Employees are in an ‘always –on’ mode thus blurring the lines between work and life and the days of work life harmony are out of the window. The question is whether quitting the only option? Does the trade-off have to be so high, life at the cost of your career or the other way around? Is there no way that we can have both co-exist in peace?

Our CEO, Shirsh Deodhar in an article for Business World online identifies that this incompatibility between work and life stems from the disparity between “employee effort and the value that an organization draws from it”. Most employees are not able to meet the strategic priorities of the organization mainly because of constant distractions and time spent away from core tasks. Self-quantification to realign work habits, increase focus and subsequently increase productivity is one competent way to bridge this chasm and ensure that employees are not required to work for longer and longer hours.

It probably is easy for a man who has made his millions to leave everything behind and go backpacking meanwhile, the average employee has to look at smartly integrating Work and Life to achieve balance.