If your work schedule is stretching you so much it's uncomfortable, perhaps a flexible work arrangement may be in order. Adjusting your schedule beyond the regular 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. workday can help ease child care burdens, let you attend school, or avoid sitting for hours in rush-hour traffic.
If you're fortunate, your company already has a flexible work arrangement policy for which you can apply. But even if your employer doesn't have such a program in place, it can't hurt to propose the idea to your boss. After all, this is a low-cost way for firms to boost employee satisfaction.
However, do your homework before requesting a flexible schedule. You need to be ready to explain how going flextime will benefit not just you, but how it will be good for the company. You'll also need to explain how you'll get your work done at different hours and how you plan to communicate with colleagues and managers.
* First, read up on how companies such as Ernst & Young, Hewlett-Packard and PricewaterhouseCoopers are rolling out flextime programs. Go to workforce.com for "Formalized flextime: The perk that brings productivity" at http://www.workforce.com/archive/feature/22/27/30/index.php (registration required).
* For help in drawing up a flextime proposal, consult Workforce.com's flextime evaluation form at http://www.workforce.com/section/02/article/23/21/08.html It covers how the policy will enhance your ability to perform your job and benefit the company.
* You can find an abbreviated version of PricewaterhouseCoopers' flexible work arrangement policy at http://www.workforce.com/archive/feature/22/27/30/223598.php * Finally, while geared mainly for employers, Womans.work.com offers a sample flextime policy at http://www.womans-work.com/flex-time_policy.htm This ddocument cites several different examples of flextime, such as peak hour flextime, adjusted lunch period, and compressed work week.
Do you work flextime? Let me know how you sold your boss on the idea and how well the program works for you.