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Employee expectations for the workplace are changing. With new challenges in recruiting and shortages in the workforce, the ball is in your court as the employer to meet the demands of the talent pool. By creating a family-friendly culture in your company, you can increase levels of productivity and loyalty, better compete in the recruitment market, and improve workplace culture to emerge as the employer of choice.
“A family-friendly workplace is one whose practices make it possible for employees to more easily balance family and work,” says Christina Lefevre Latner of the San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce. “Family-friendly policies act to meet, directly or indirectly, the needs of children, parents, disabled family members, and the oldest generation.” This bridges the gap between family and work, alleviating a high degree of pressure felt by many employees.
As the lines blur between work lives and personal lives, many employees are finding it difficult to stay in careers that are detracting from the lives of their families at home. Issues of connectedness, safety, physical health, and mental health are taking higher precedence in the lives of many workers. A family-friendly workplace is sensitive to the needs of its workforce and begins to break down barriers between the professional and personal lives of its staff better both the employee and the company as a whole.
Family-friendly policies support the balance between professional and personal life roles faced by many in the workforce. They demonstrate a sense of value and honor to the employee and the family they’re working to support. This vastly improves loyalty and retention while increasing rates of positivity and productivity in the workplace. In short, Christina says, it’s “business smart.”
This prioritization of the employer to acknowledge the needs and demands of their employees’ lives creates an atmosphere of trust rippling benefits throughout the company.
Becoming family-friendly may take time but doesn’t need to be expensive! Simple acts such as offering flexibility in scheduling, leave, or accommodations can go a long way in improving the culture in your workplace. Identify the actions that work for your business and commit to improving your culture!
Consider implementing family-friendly policies such as:
There’s no “one size fits all” solution to improving your company culture and each business will be different with what they need and can accommodate. Begin with a baseline idea to first identify where your company is starting, articulate where the need is, and commit to moving forward from there.
At Morris & Garritano, family-friendly policies are a major part of our company’s culture and commitment to the wellbeing of our employees. Policies such as our flexible scheduling and hybrid accommodations allow employee needs to be met without compromising the productivity of the workweek. We know how important families are to our employees and, in fact, 32 of our employees have family members working together here at M&G!
M&G’s Human Resources Director, Angela Toomey, expresses this commitment to a family-friendly workplace by saying, “We welcome employees to show off their family! It’s common to see pets and kids visiting our office. Each year we plan family-inclusive events like summer picnics, holidays, and our volunteer events.”
The agency places a heavy emphasis on the importance of building trust between both the employer and the employee and attributes this to the success of their flexible, hybrid work environment. Employees are offered the choice to work completely in-office, remote, or a bit of both, switching between the two as needed or desired. Angela stresses that trust is “critical to any family-friendly workplace.” She says, “The success of your flexibility policies will rest on the level of trust between not just employees and managers but trust among teams. Our business is built on integrity, and we trust our employees to do the right thing.”
Learn more about becoming a family-friendly workplace here in our conversation with Christina Lefevre Latner of the San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce.
Your company can take its first steps today to becoming a more family-friendly workplace today with the We Are the Care Initiative at slofamilyfriendlywork.org. You can learn more on their site or reach out to Morris & Garritano for additional HR-related questions and resources.