Work-Life Balance & Planning Post-Crisis – A Starting Point?

Work-Life Balance & Planning Post-Crisis – A Starting Point?

Work-Life Balance & Planning Post-Crisis – A Starting Point?

By Chris De Luca

There is always a price to pay for how we decide to live, and this might not be initially apparent, or it may not be us who pays it. Due to the current crisis, people are spending less and saving more than this time last year. Some may be feeling quite well-off; however, the near future may be very uncertain for many, especially as the tapering of furloughing begins.

The move to homeworking has accelerated and, for many people and businesses, this situation comes with potential perils. If you run a small business, you may be juggling sales with home-schooling. If you are a manager of a business, you may be focused on how you can effectively manage your people and all the other demands on your time.

For business owners, the trade-off between costs, efficiencies, and staff welfare has to be balanced with the need (not desire) to be profitable. This needs to be a concern for employees too. While commuting costs have gone, earnings may still not maintain the same trajectory – or they may disappear if the business flounders.

There is also the need for an appropriate space to work, free from distractions, but for me there is a more significant concern. Having been based at home before, a sense of isolation can develop, especially when the weather turns, and the nights start to draw in.

Employers and employees also need to consider the security of the data being used at home, along with connectivity. And to be a little more prosaic, whether changes need to be made to the terms of the employer liability cover and home-working employees may need to check the terms of their house insurance.

There are some quite complex questions being posed here, but the reality is there are very few businesses that can sustain a profitable model without some face-to-face interaction. I know all of this is fundamental for myself and my team.

We define the real risk as the (mainly financial) implications of not achieving your objectives. We work on ‘probability assessments’. Too often (especially now) we are bombarded with speculation or opinion, dressed up as unassailable fact, setting out a usually extreme position as absolute.

Inevitably, reality is never as bad or as good as it seems (we live in a universe of grey). The lack of resilience in the planning by businesses and governments around the world, as exposed by the current crisis, highlights to us all the need to build in some leeway when it comes to our own financial planning.

If you have got to this point, well done and thank you for taking the time! This has been very much in the here and now, in my next article, I will be focussing on the impact of the current crisis, our changing social attitudes and how it may affect all of us in the long term.

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