When employees have ample time to focus on their personal lives, it may boost their productivity at work.

A life-work balance has become the focus of much research in recent years. The research shows and proves that employees need a balance between their jobs and their personal lives. The days of living to work have passed. Now employees believe in the work to live mantra, and their families have taken over as the priority.

Many companies utilize specific benefits to encourage a balance of job and personal life among staff. Some of these, such as telecommuting and on-site child care, don’t fit into the retail bakery environment, but there are some that can. With some creative scheduling and cooperation, the retail bakery owner can offer employees some benefits that aide in the balance and overall happiness of bakery staffers.

Alternative Work Schedules

According to an October 2013 survey on workplace flexibility by World at Work, the 4/10 workweek — where employees work four 10-hour days in the office, followed by three days off — is the most common alternative work schedule. Another popular option is the 9/80 arrangement: Individuals work nine-hour days Monday through Thursday and get every other Friday off.

One advantage of an alternative work schedule is that more-intensive time in the office may allow you to get more deeply involved in your work and boost your productivity. Another perk: Traveling to and from work outside of normal commute hours can help you avoid rush-hour traffic.


Another take on alternative schedules is flextime. This is when your employer requires you to be in the office on certain days or available for a certain number of core hours each day. You have flexibility in setting the rest of your schedule.

Here's an example of flextime in action: If you're a parent, you might start at 7 a.m., before the majority of the team arrives at work. Your early arrival allows you to be home in time to pick up your kids from school. On the other hand, if you're a night owl, you might shift your schedule so you start at 11 a.m. and make up the time by staying later in the evening.

Policies vary by employer, of course, but choosing your schedule can be truly liberating. By making your work fit your personal life, instead of the other way around, you have a much better chance of achieving work-life balance.