NEW YORK, Sept. 2, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Battalia Winston, one of the nation's largest women-owned executive search firms, has published the results of a recent study of senior executives and found that 83% of surveyed companies encourage a healthy work-life balance among their employees.
The national survey included senior executives leading companies of varying sizes, both public and private, in a range of industries. Overall, Battalia Winston found that most companies valuing work-life balance have programs and policies in place to support that stance:
- 73% offer flexible schedules
- 66% offer teleworking options
- 63% have implemented technology, like teleconferencing and video-chat, to reduce required travel
A modest number of responding companies have programs designed to help working parents, with 21% offering maternity leave beyond what's required by law and only 14% offering paternity leave beyond what's required by law.
Work-life balance continues to be a dominating topic in the coverage of workplace issues, and the survey's findings reflect this trend: Just over a third of respondents indicated that their company values work-life balance more so than five years ago, while half of respondents reported that their position has remained the same and existing programs have been maintained (rather than expanded).
The survey also asked leaders about their personal work habits, finding that, even though over half (55%) said they frequently work on either evenings, weekends, or both, nearly 67% are satisfied with their work-life balance.
When asked to elaborate on their satisfaction levels, many respondents characterized late nights and weekends as expected components of managing a company. One CEO commented, "It's [working nights/weekends] the nature of the job and the digital age. Customers and owners expect that we are more connected."
Another respondent said that, as an entrepreneur responsible for generating the company's new business, "there is de facto no limit" to the amount of hours he will work, adding, "We have to make our own choices, based on our individual taste." Other respondents also connected work-life balance to personal choice. One reported, "This [working evenings/weekends] is both my style and new start up company's demands."
The respondents' comments revealed that many consider work-life balance a continuous process that can ebb and flow over time. One CIO remarked, "I take time as I need it so it balances working any evenings or weekends." An SVP of HR explained, "I have flexibility in my schedule to 'work' evenings and weekends as needed or as I choose." And another SVP mentioned that her work-life balance, though not perfect, has improved: "I frequently work evenings and occasionally on weekends. I used to work frequently on both and thus I have improved my work-life balance (and therefore am satisfied)."
Of the respondents who were satisfied with their work-life balance, 85% said their companies encourage a healthy work-life balance for their employees and 65% said their companies have at least some programs/policies in place to support that position. On the other hand, only 69% of respondents who were unsatisfied with their personal work-life balance said their companies encouraged a healthy work-life balance for employees.
"Our study confirms that the definition of 'work-life' balance continues to be in flux," says Battalia Winston CEO, Dale Winston. "Executives understand that a healthy work-life balance doesn't necessarily mean an eight-hour work day. Leaders are beginning to have a more holistic mindset: sometimes you must tip the scales toward work, sometimes toward family or your personal life. They're thinking overall balance, not measuring the number of hours they spend at their desk, and that mentality is trickling down to the rest of the company."
About Battalia Winston
Battalia Winston has been successfully meeting client needs in executive recruitment for 50 years and is currently ranked as one of the nation's 20 largest retained executive search firms, as well as one of the world's largest woman-owned search firms. Headquartered in New York City, the firm also has offices in New Jersey, Boston, Washington, D.C., Denver, Los Angeles and Chicago. Battalia Winston is an agile and uniquely flexible firm, and their culture is focused on providing highly personalized, responsive client service.
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