OHS awards consider work/life balance but not vice versa

On 15 March 2010, the Australian Government congratulated the winners of, and participants in, the 2009–10 National Work–Life Balance Awards. According to a media release from the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations: “The Awards…. recognise family friendly practices like flexible working hours, options for working from home, paid parental leave, job sharing, onsite carer’s … Continue reading “OHS awards consider work/life balance but not vice versa”

Work/life balance needs to grow into sustainability

Just as government is reigning in the excesses of the financial sector over the last decade or so, there is a strong movement to pull back on the workload excesses. Some of this is through the work/life balance movement.

In terms of occupational health and safety, this movement has a strong base that is reflected in a lot of OHS legislation where individual employees have a responsibility to ensure they are working safely and not putting themselves at risk. This can be a very difficult obligation when one is working in an organisation that does not grant safety or mental health or its social obligations much weight.

Relocation is always an option for an improved work/life balance

A couple of years ago there was a campaign in Australia to increase the number of general practitioners in rural areas due to a doctor shortage.  One doctor, Nicole Anderson, chose to relocate from tropical Queensland to temperate Tasmania.  She did so for several reasons including improving her work/life balance. During the campaign in November … Continue reading “Relocation is always an option for an improved work/life balance”

Times when work/life balance should be sacrificed

Further to my post on public service workloads, the Finance Minister, Lindsay Tanner, author of the 2003 book on work/life balance, has stated on television (if you get through the fuel price discussion) that  “There’s always going to be some disgruntled people in a large organisation,” he said. “Whether there’s truth in what they say, who … Continue reading “Times when work/life balance should be sacrificed”

OHS, Shareholders & Work/Life Balance

I have always believed that safety practitioners in one country can learn much about safety management from the activities and events in other countries. Often it is possible to anticipate hazards by being able to look over our factory fences or national borders.

The increased risk of terrorist attack and the concerns over bird flu or H5N1 have changed our perception of workplace safety risks. During my studies we took an airplane crash as the extreme example of a high risk low probability event. That criteria has undergone some re-evaluation.

Self-employment should not be seen as a work/life solution

Work/life balance is a close cousin to occupational health and safety (OHS), particularly health.  It is often the gateway people use to reduce occupational health risks such as stress and other psychosocial issues.  Moving to self-employment can be a successful strategy but it is not as easy as simply relocating one’s individual workplace or teleworking, the …

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