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Business Ethics: When the Work-Life Scales Are Unequal. Analytical Essay

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Updated: Dec 13th, 2018

Work-life balance is a flexible working program that has become common in several organizations in the US. Some firms have introduced flexible working hours for their employees, who need to balance between family and work responsibilities. Work-life balance is a trend that has picked up in various places of work in the US. This work-life balance has an impact on relationships that employees have with each other. Workers who have children have found flexible working hours more rewarding for their careers and family lives.

The workplace environment is experiencing a lot of changes. Employers have realized the importance of offering their employees flexible work schedules, which help them balance between work and family life. However, the work-life balance approach is not getting support from all workers as expected.

Workers with no children and families to care for, feel that their colleagues who have families use this as a pretext to avoid performing their duties. They feel that they shoulder the burden of their absentee colleagues because they have to perform extra duties. It is difficult for working class parents, especially mothers, to balance their commitment to work and family effectively.

However, some workers are very supportive of their colleagues who are forced by family circumstances to stick to flexible working hours. These workers understand the importance of their colleagues being involved in the lives of their children. A flexible work schedule makes such workers more effective.

This is because of the satisfaction they get from performing their work duties and spending time with their children. Employees who are away from their work stations can be telephoned or emailed if an urgent issue that needs their input comes up at work. This has created a lot of harmony between workers, in firms which have work-life balance schedules.

Many firms are finding it difficult to implement flexible work systems. Some employees do not have children but still need time to attend to their family members, who need their attention. Employees who care for their elderly parents or grandparents feel that their colleagues who have children are favored more by the work-life balance schedules than them.

They claim that they also deserve to be given flexible work schedules, which allow them to care for their elderly relatives more. Human resource specialists argue that, for a flexible work program to succeed, all employees with alternative interests away from work need to be considered.

Employees in firms who offer flexible work schedules should focus on how their duties are going to be done during the period they are away. This will lessen the burden that is shouldered by their colleagues when they are away from work. Firms need to monitor the time each worker spends at the workplace, to determine every individual’s productivity level.

A work-life balance program can only be effective if all employees communicate with each other easily, regardless of their locations. Workers also need to notify their colleagues if they are planning to leave their workstations early. Flexible working programs need to be fair to all workers to reduce resentment between them.

Organizations need to meet crucial deadlines and performance targets. Implementation of a work-life balance program should ensure that productivity levels in the organization remain consistent. This case confirms that many firms face difficulties when implementing flexible work programs for their employees. All employees need to be given equal consideration when a flexible work program is being implemented.

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IvyPanda. (2018) 'Business Ethics: When the Work-Life Scales Are Unequal'. 13 December.

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