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Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Work-Life Balance: Do the French Have It Right?

Since we're into Day Two of a typical workweek, it's a good time to take a look at a thought-provoking entry from the Wall Street Journal’s “The Juggle” blog, which is all about work/life balance.

The topic: the French 35-hour workweek, and its impact on health and productivity.

The blog entry refers to another great work/life balance article, recently published in the Wall Street Journal newspaper:

“Indeed, according to another Journal piece that ran earlier this week, there’s a link between leisure and good health. The frequency of annual vacations was associated with a reduced risk of death in middle-aged men at high risk of heart disease, according to a 2000 study. And a 2005 study of 1,500 women aged 25 to 75 suggests that failing to take a break at least once a year brings psychological health risks.”

To say a shorter workweek is a tough sell to upper management is a huge understatement. But the concept of work-life balance is very important to worker productivity, and selling that is easier.

Top employers take work-life balance into account with family-friendly policies like flexible time, telecommuting, on-site daycare, and personal days.

Here are some excellent resources on work-life balance from the Alliance for Work-Life Progress.

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