When I finished studying and entered the working world, I made a promise to myself that I would continue to foster my adventure-seeking self and I’m so glad I did. Here’s why…
It’s very easy for the head honchos in an agency to write wonderfully wise words about the importance of creating a great work/life balance and their grand plans of how to implement said balance. But the reality is often very different, so the proof really is in the pudding, as the saying goes.
I was proud to come across the ‘pudding’ recently when I read a LinkedIn article post by one of our grads (now an Account Exec), Kayla Budge. In it she talks about our ‘way of working’ and how it’s allowed her to achieve her personal goals outside of the office, with her colleagues’ support.
We’re big advocates of real work/life balance here at Because. Not just because we value ‘fair’ (we talk a lot about give & take at Because) but also because we’re very commercial. A happy, fulfilled team will give you their very best, so we try really hard to create a working environment that allows for this. As CEO it makes me proud to know that our team recognises, appreciates and makes the most of this.
With Kayla’s permission we’ve posted the article below. A real-life account that proves the hard work we put into creating our culture really does ensure our team both work and play even harder.
When I finished studying and entered the working world as an Account Executive, I made a promise to myself that I would continue to foster my adventure-seeking self and grow this passion. One thing that has been consistent in my goals through the years, is that I want to keep challenging myself both in and outside of studying and work, learning invaluable skills along the way.
It’s easy as a graduate to get sucked into a new job. You want to prove yourself in the unfamiliar environment and that requires putting in the time and effort, which I am completely willing and happy to do. But I am also determined to maintain the passions I have outside of the office.
Something I, however, did not expect to encounter in this transition was a working environment which would so aptly advocate for this. The agency I’m in encourages the team to schedule weekly ‘me-time’. They also invite us to share personal goals or achievements on our daily online catch-up (the huddle) which means people really get behind you both in and outside of the office. These weekly implementations have allowed me to fully tackle the challenge of balance. I’m working hard, but I also feel fulfilled personally, and I am so lucky to be in an environment which pushes these kinds of habits.
Two recent personal achievements that I’ve worked towards (with support from my office and team) have been: Getting my diving license – the first dive I did felt so surreal and reiterated the importance of adventure in my life. And running a half marathon. After sharing my drive to do this on the huddle, a few of my colleagues signed up with me to run the Two Oceans Marathon. We trained together and smashed it as a team!
I fully believe that having this balance and using the hours you’re given in a day efficiently have been truly beneficial. Here are 3 reasons why:
1. Better Productivity
Having something to look forward to outside of work has really motivated me to work harder while at work so that I can fully enjoy the time after work. It has also increased my engagement, meaning that I can perform better and learn more while I am at work.
This has given me a greater sense of living life to the fullest and enjoying my 20s in their ‘all’ while I can. Giving myself this space to grow is also increasing my self-awareness, patience and decision making which are all qualities I also believe enhance my ability as an Account Executive.
3. Mental, physical and emotional wellbeing
Better physical health and confidence have come from this. Challenging myself physically and mentally is so rewarding when I can see the progress I am making and how much I am growing as an individual. It has also enhanced my emotional skills as I build new relationships and become more comfortable doing things with my own company. I have personally also felt less stressed at work and being in the fast-paced and sometimes demands environment of an agency it has been highly beneficial for my mental wellbeing.
I’m obviously not alone in my thinking. Check out The Remarkable Impact of Hobbies on Career. An amazing Ted Talk which highlights how hobbies improve performance at work. This is reiterated by Forbes in their articles The Importance of Cultivating a Passion Outside of Work and The Evolving Definition Of Work-Life Balance.
Now, I am not saying everyone should stop, drop and roll out of the office and go do something random that has always been at the back of their minds. But I do believe you’ll notice the difference if you fully step away from the laptop and put a bit of time aside for some un-work related hobbies. Ready? Let’s go.