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Work-Life Toolkit for Managers: Best Practices & Tips


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Work-Life Best Practices & Tips

It is important to note that creating solutions is a collaborative process between the manager and the individual or group in order to increase the success of solutions. The following are considerations for managers when planning, implementing, and evaluating actionable steps to create work-life solutions and recommendations. . 

General Considerations

• Complete training tailored for managers about the different work-life areas and how to engage employees such as Telework Fundamentals for Managers
• Communicate your support for work-life integration regularly
• Take every opportunity to engage and utilize your local agency Work-Life Coordinators
• Understand the diverse needs of your employees • Know your organization’s make-up (i.e., generational profile, overall culture, etc.)
• Keep programs and policies updated as the needs of the organization and employees change
• Make sure that both formal and informal flexible work arrangements are ethically sound and meet the organization’s over-arching guidance • Include employees when assessing individual needs, planning, and monitoring
• Be proactive and effectively communicate and ensure confidentiality
• Leverage nationally recognized work-life awareness initiatives (e.g., breast cancer awareness, mental health awareness, etc.)

• Encourage flexible work options
• Support and promote subsidized childcare
• Refer to EAP for caregiver resources in the community
• Promote the use of on-site support groups for working caregivers
• Support and promote discounted backup home care for emergency needs
• Support family leave
• Refer to tele-healthcare product resource that may be available (i.e., Phone or web-based virtual medical consulting services)

Managers can make informal or formal referrals to the EAP. Below are tips regarding informal referrals to the EAP:

• Do not make assumptions nor try to diagnose an employee's challenge
• Call the EAP before meeting with the employee. An EAP consultant can review the situation, advise whether a referral is warranted and help prepare you for the meeting with the employee privately
• Explain the EAP is a confidential, short-term problem solving and referral service
• State the EAP is voluntarily
• Invite EAP Administrators and Counselors to attend staff meeting, provide an overview of services available, and answer employee questions
• Share contact information for EAP Administrator
• Remind employees that we all have a need to seek help and consultation at some point in our lives
• If you have used the EAP yourself, share your experience as appropriate
• Use coaching techniques in your approach and conversations Coaching Webinar

• Communicate support and provide time and flexibilities for employees to participate in agency wellness events (e.g., fitness classes, health fairs)
• Encourage employees to set wellness goals, and if they would like, incorporate those goals in their Individual Development Plans
• Encourage employees to use sick leave for preventative care appointments (e.g., annual physical exams, dental cleaning, immunizations, etc.)
• Model healthy behaviors and create cultural norms that support employee health (e.g., standing during staff meeting or conference calls, walking meetings, eating healthy foods, practicing mindfulness, taking the stairs, etc.)
• Encourage employees to understand and use health insurance benefits, and to talk to agency benefits officers if they have any questions
• Invite Worksite Health & Wellness Coordinators and Benefits Officers to attend staff meeting, provide an overview of services available, and answer employee questions
• Celebrate wellness successes
• Offer healthy options at office social events and celebrations (e.g., have a salad bar instead of a cake for a birthday party)

• Ensure all teleworkers successfully complete mandatory training Telework 101 for Employees
• Communicate clear, results-based performance expectations
• Participate in telework and lead by example
• Know your agency Telework Managing Office and Telework Coordinator
• Determine employee eligibility
• Open and sustain lines of communication to increase accessibility
• Work with employees to determine the best ways to monitor their work progress
• Utilize formal and contingent telework agreements
• Utilize a phased approach when planning and implementing telework strategies (i.e., conduct a pilot)
• View telework as a management practice and not an individual incentive
• Validate the use of communication devices and mobile technology resources (i.e., Conduct telework-ready exercises)

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