Monday, September 10, 2012

No such thing as work-life balance

With all the recent emphasis on work-life balance, I like to say to all that there is absolutely no such thing as work-life balance, but there is something called employee's rights.

Think back... Why all the emphasis on work-life balance? That's because there is a tendency for employees to work longer and harder than what they were contracted to in the first place. Let me focus on 3 things that employees are usually "exploited" on, which affects our family time and bonding.

There is always something in your contract that states the working hours, but yet there will be another overriding it to say that you have to finish your work. There is no protection for employees if the employer choose to load you with a lot of work where you will end up working your heart out and then, considered as an "average" worker because you just fulfilled the tasks that were assigned to you. Fair?

Next, number of leave days. The law is very silent on the number of days that a employee can get for leave, and the definition of leave days. Why must the employees remain contactable during leave days? Why must employees go back to work when you're on leave to work on "urgent" tasks that no one seemingly can handle when you're gone, and yet you're paid like a normal worker? Some contract staff are also not given leave days even though they work exactly the same number of hours as permanent staff. Fair?

Last but not least, taking leave. How many employees are stuck in a case where they are the only person doing the job due to "productivity" and they are either stuck with a sense of responsibility which means they are hesitant to take leave, or their leave request gets rejected. Encashment of leave? Nope, no such thing for employees even though by mandating this, it will ensure employers will take care of the employees' welfare and ensure that they have sufficient staff for their business operations.

The key is not in work-life balance. It's in the protection of any basic workers rights. Personal and family time is important in an healthy life and in the cut throat market, you cannot expect all companies to give sufficient personal or family time unless it is mandated by the government.

That's the hard truth, at least to me. Sad isn't it?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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