UNDER DEVELOPMENT: Managers' Toolkit: List of Behaviors that may Indicate a Work-Life Challenge


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There is not always a single work-life solution or recommendation that may address an employee’s needs. The goal for a manager is to accurately identify employee work-life needs and potential solutions using appropriate resources and authority. This is accomplished through effective communication and assessment. The following are examples of behaviors you may observe from an employees' performance or interaction that may indicate they are experiencing a work-life challenge:

Signs of potential challenges with work, family, and/or dependent care responsibilities:

• Missed deadlines 
• Less likely to participate in group projects and meetings 
• Increased unscheduled absenteeism 
• Persistent decrease in performance 
• Customer complaints 
• Changes in personal behavior 
• Coworker complaints 
• Indicators of workplace violence, conflicts, or bullying
• Late to work or departing early on a frequent basis 
• Receiving or making a high number of personal calls while at work 
• Frequently taking unscheduled leave 
• Requesting to retire earlier than planned 
• Turning down a promotion 
• Expressed marital, parental, or family problems 
• Expressed concern of domestic violence, stalking, or sexual assault

Signs of potential challenges with physical or mental health:

• Symptoms that may be associated with alcohol or substance abuse 
• Recent loss of a love one – bereavement 
• Signs or expression of anxiety or depression – mental health 
• Expressed concerns of overall health status 
• Nursing mother employees – (need to meet support breastfeeding needs) 
• Recent medical procedure 
• Direct or indirect statement about ending one's life 
• Noticeable changes in mood or behavior 
• Voicing hopelessness or helplessness

Other signs of potential personal challenges:

• Expressed legal concerns
• Expressed financial difficulties and challenges
• Borrowing money from coworkers

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