I’ve read a lot of talk lately about the idea of flexible work — Goldman Sachs is suddenly encouraging junior employees to take weekends off, a campaign recently kicked off in support of work flexibility, and the New York Times examined how working women are stigmatized for taking advantage of employers’ programs and, say, leaving early to care for a child.
I know I’m very lucky to be able to work almost exclusively from home, though I also know that that is only one component of a truly “flexible” job. Equally important is being able to maintain a reasonable workload — I mean, it’s obviously a moving target, but so many of us feel pressured to take on more work than we can handle while still fielding our other commitments, and end up feeling perpetually stressed and behind. This kind of work-life balance will never be had without some top-down changes on the part of our culture and our employers (or our inner bosses, in the case of freelancers), and it’s why, in spite of the fact that the Goldman announcement was widely ridiculed, I think it’s also worth celebrating. It’s not about being lazy. It’s about working hard when you’re at work, and enjoying other pursuits after that.
Of course, I left work early this afternoon because of a sick kid, so here I am, posting this after normal working hours.
Does your job give you some flexibility to manage your other commitments and interests?