Work is very important in life, but making time for other aspects such as family and other personal developments is also crucial. Every employee needs a balance between work and their personal life, especially during this Covid-19 era, where most have been working from home, hence making it hard to set boundaries. Organisations have a big role in helping their employees to strike this balance. Eloi Shema Bwimba, an entrepreneur says that a work-life balance is of paramount contribution to the well-being of both the company and the employees. “It helps the employees to have a healthy life outside of work, which enhances the productivity of the employees as well as the performance of the organisation,” he says. He adds that it increases the quality of customer service; because as employees are provided enough time to balance their job and personal life, they are able to provide satisfying services and serve well the organisation. “A lot of poor performance from some employees is due to their personal issues that they do not afford to deal with. Knowing how to balance your work and your personal life is a great advantage that many do not have the privilege to,” says Eva Umuliza who works at Bank of Kigali. Benefits of promoting a work-life balance According to Tanya Dalton, a blog that provides business coaching, a healthy balance between work and social life results in many benefits for both employees and their company. Employees will be more motivated, have less stress, and have higher productivity. Employers can gain from these well-balanced employees as they are a valuable asset in a company’s development. “Promoting it would allow people to know-how safely and healthy they could treat themselves in order that their personal life does not affect their work performance. A work-life balance helps to minimise stress and even burnout in the workplace,” Bwimba states. Anne Laure Irebe who is a working mother and wife, says that her organisation promoting a work-life balance helps her a lot. She says she is able to go to work without any stress, have quality time with her family, and also have a social life without having any problems. “For people that have a lot in their lives, their mental health is always at stake. If at least their job isn’t a stress factor to them, it is an advantage to their well-being.” How to promote a work-life balance Here are a few points to consider according to a Forbes article on how companies improve a work-life balance: They build a culture of care One of the most important ways to improve balance is to build a culture where employees feel supported and respected. If there is a strong psychological contract between employees and their employer, they will perform better and demonstrate a higher commitment to the organisation. They build a culture of flexibility Allowing employees to have flexible workdays or hours is a critical way to encourage a healthy work-life balance. Creating adaptable work environments helps to build resilient teams. There are several options. One option is having weekly hour requirements but allowing employees to vary how many hours they work each day as long as they reach the required total. They build a culture of trust Building a culture of trust helps to reduce the stress that accompanies ambiguity. Transparency is key. While employers may not be able to share everything with their teams, they can provide them with the information they need to see how their work is contributing to the company’s mission. They build a culture of health An integral part of work-life balance is prioritising health and wellness. Setting and modelling boundaries between work and home hours, so employees do not feel they must always be available is critical. Encouraging employees to take frequent breaks and making fitness, both physical and mental a priority, helps boost energy and concentration, and decrease stress.