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Five reasons flexible working is for men

For years, women have been trying to make flexible work work but until now the conversation on how men can use flexible working to thrive in their careers and lives hasn't been as much of a focus. Yet flexible work is important to men.

This year for Men’s Health Week, we’d like to highlight five reasons why flexible working is just as important and useful for men’s physical and mental wellbeing.

1. Gain back time for a healthier life

One of the biggest advantages of flexible working is getting time back in your day to focus on your physical wellbeing. Arrangements like remote working or a compressed working week can help you unlock more time for exercising, and preparing nutritious meals, two big factors in a healthy lifestyle. Working from home also reduces the stressful and often long commutes into the office, meaning you have more time in your day to get other important non-work related tasks done.

2. Banish the burnout

Flex work helps men achieve a better work-life balance by reducing stress and boosting productivity. Men’s mental health is a serious issue in Australia and according to Beyond Blue, prolonged or excessive job stress accounts for 13 per cent of depression in working men. A flexible work arrangement can help you manage the stress of your job by taking back control of your schedule and being more productive in the hours you do work.

3. Make time for your side gig

For the 1 in 6 Australians who want to start a business, flexible work could be a powerful tool in making that dream come true. With a flex work arrangement, individuals can more evenly pursue their passion projects and side gigs while staying in their primary role. Experimenting with a compressed work week, going part-time or working non-traditional hours are some examples of getting the best of both worlds when it comes to growing your side gig into a fully scaled business.

4. Be more present with loved ones

Men who work flexibly usually have more time with family and loved ones, which plays a significant factor in healthy emotional and mental wellbeing. For fathers in particular, flexible working provides the opportunity to be actively engaged in parenting.

Research by the Diversity Council of Australia found flexible work is significantly appealing to young fathers, with 80 per cent of respondents saying they wanted the flexibility to choose their start and finish times and/or work a compressed working week. Using a flexible work arrangement to prioritise time with your children and loved ones helps improve mental wellbeing for both fathers’ and their families.

5. Flex work is successful work

Until now, stigmas and judgement has stopped men from getting the flexibility they need from their workplace. A 2016 study found that men were twice as likely to have their flexible work request rejected than their female colleagues. One upside to the Coronavirus pandemic is that many organisations are rethinking the way they work and realising the benefits of flexible work arrangements.

As we move towards a more agile workforce, more and more frequently, we are seeing flexibility being integrated into all sorts of positions and professions, including senior roles. In 2020, rather than suggesting you’re uncommitted, using flex work successfully shows you are a responsive, productive, forward thinking employee.

Some useful resources for requesting and/or bringing to life flexible work arrangement/s are:

If you’d like to find out more about how a flexible work arrangement could help you unlock the life you want or how to negotiate , talk to one of our Job Pair Flex Work Coaches.

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