Working out a life balance

25 April 2013
Working out a life balance

A happy workplace with high levels of staff engagement will boost staff retention and add to profitability, says Julie Fairweather

Although not always easy to achieve, a good work-life balance is extremely important, particularly in a non-stop, full-on business such as hospitality where the hours can be long and the demands high.

As a 24-hour business, hotels need to operate on a shift-pattern basis. When working out these complex rotas it is important to ensure that all staff, particularly those employees who are either working a variety of shift patterns or are frequently on night duty, feel happy in their workplace and are able to achieve a good work-life balance.
When this balance is not in place or an individual is feeling overwhelmed by too much work and not enough down time, the obvious downside can be stress, inefficiency or disengagement with the company. These in turn can lead to a high turnover of staff and poor customer service, all of which can have a negative effect on the business.

A better work-life balance can be achieved through making just a few simple changes to your working day, such as taking the time to exercise before or after work.

At the Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa, we believe that promoting a happy workplace with a rewarding culture must lie at the heart of what we do. As such, we are hosting a work-life balance month for associates throughout the month of April, featuring a diverse range of activities and events.

Highlights include Tai Chi, lifestyle classes, nutritional advice, and practical workshops. We have also arranged some fun, social events outside the hotel, which help to strengthen relations and promote team spirit.

Employee satisfaction at the Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa is sitting at 91%, as measured by our annual employee engagement survey, while the hotel is currently the fifth highest Sheraton hotel for guest satisfaction out of a total of 48 Starwood properties in the Europe, Africa and Middle East region. This proves that looking after associates and ensuring they are happy really does bring tangible business results.

Julie Fairweather is director of human resources, Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa, Edinburgh

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