Leaner staffs are creating more demands at the office, making it more difficult for working fathers to achieve a healthy work/life balance. Sixty-three percent of working dads said they work more than 40 hours per week. Three in ten (31 percent) working dads who take work home reported they typically bring work home five days a week or more. Thirty percent bring work home on the weekends.
Heavier workloads and longer hours are resulting in less quality time with family. Close to four- in-ten (37 percent) of working dads said they spend two hours or less with their children each work day. More than three-in-ten (35 percent) reported they missed two or more significant events in their child’s life due to work in the last year.
"Especially in tough times, working dads have to be more creative and strategic to successfully juggle both work and family commitments," said Jason Ferrara, VP Corporate Marketing at CareerBuilder and father of two. "Employers understand the importance of working dads’ time away from the office and continue to place an emphasis on work/life balance through benefits that encourage employees to better manage their schedules. However, year over year, we find that nearly half of working dads do not take advantage of the flexible work arrangements offered to them."
Ferrara recommends the following tips for working dads navigating through difficult economic times:
Keep everyone in the mix - Remember that communication is a two-way street. Besides just listening to what is going on in your family’s lives, talk about what is going on in your office, so everyone understands why you are away or have to do some work when you are home.
Learn to say no - In addition to actual work, sometimes activities associated with your job can take a toll on your free time. Determine what additional activities you can turn down and which are necessary so that you can free up more of your time outside of the office.
Develop a master family calendar - Add every family member’s schedule to one master calendar so there are no surprises. Also, save vacation days for important events and talk to your supervisor about flexible work arrangements.
Play now, work later - Put down your Blackberry and avoid checking e-mails until after your children have gone to sleep.
Plan a family event in your office - Take advantage of the summer months when school is out and the office may be less hectic by scheduling a kid-friendly potluck or other event with co-workers and their families.
This survey was conducted online within the U.S. by Harris Interactive© on behalf of CareerBuilder among 800 U.S. working dads (employed full-time; not self-employed; non government, with children age 18 or younger living in the household); ages 18 and over between February 10 and March 2, 2010 (percentages for some questions are based on a subset of U.S. employees, based on their responses to certain questions). With a pure probability sample of 800, one could say with a 95 percent probability that the overall results have a sampling error of +/- 3.46 percentage points. Sampling error for data from sub-samples is higher and varies.
CareerBuilder is the global leader in human capital solutions, helping companies target and attract their most important asset - their people. Its online career site, CareerBuilder.com®, is the largest in the United States with more than 23 million unique visitors, 1 million jobs and 32 million resumes. CareerBuilder works with the world’s top employers, providing resources for everything from employment branding and data analysis to recruitment support. More than 9,000 websites, including 140 newspapers and broadband portals such as MSN and AOL, feature CareerBuilder’s proprietary job search technology on their career sites. Owned by Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE:GCI), Tribune Company, The McClatchy Company (NYSE:MNI) and Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT), CareerBuilder and its subsidiaries operate in the United States, Europe, Canada and Asia. For more information, visit www.careerbuilder.com.
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