We have talked about determining if someone's personality is suited for telecommuting, and how individuals can adapt to achieve work-life balance, but what about those who are unable to telecommute? Flexible working hours is a way to ensure that every employee has the freedom to be creative and brainstorm when his/her mind is working best. By altering work hours based on personality instead of an office-wide standard, employees will have increased productivity, and tasks will be prioritized more efficiently.
Keep in mind that flexible work schedules may not be appropriate for every employee. With varying personalities within an office, individual needs will be different. Consultant John Eary said it best: "The sense that everyone who does the same job will have the same needs and requirements is old-fashioned. We are talking about people and changing cultures."
Those in creative roles are known for working more efficiently when given the option to chose their own hours, and others who are more planner types prefer to have a set schedule, similar to a 9-to-5. Flexible workers oftentimes should be extroverted, which may sound counterintuitive, but is essential to opening doors for communication and staying on a given task. Studies show that besides the boost in overall productivity, employees with flexible hours are generally healthier and have a better sleep schedule. When employees are given the option to plan their work schedule around their social and sleep schedules, they are more engaged and, dare I say, excited to be working.
How can you provide a flexible schedule that works best for your employees and the company? The following five standards are a good guidebook to leading a successful flexible work schedule among various employees:
- Each employee should have a commitment to the company as well as their personal success when tasked with projects or deadlines. Their personalities should show that they are independent, understanding, and confident, among other action-taker-like traits.
- Develop a flexible work policy that works for both the company and the employee. There will likely be compromises on each end, but defining a balance between both is essential to a successful flexible work policy.
- Set communication standards. Employees should be communicating with their team when needed. It's best to have communication standards set in place before switching to a flexible schedule. This will aid anyone who is on a differing schedule, but still needs to be in contact.
- Ensure your management team understands the need for delivery deadlines versus the standard working hours or workweek, while also setting an example for the level of interaction expected.
- Find the right fit. As previously mentioned, not all employees will benefit from a flexible work schedule. Giving your employees a personality assessment to better identify their needs is the beginning to higher productivity for those individuals.
While it may be difficult to give up a sense of control when it comes to your employees' level of engagement, it will better benefit the company if you provide employees with control of their environment. Finding the fine line between trust and control is the soft spot for flexible working hours.
To find out which of your employees would best benefit from a flexible work schedule, try the Traitify personality assessment today!