Is It Possible to Have Work-Life Balance at a Startup?

Some people said that work-life balance is a myth. It’s even more impossible for startup people to achieve work-life balance. So, is it possible to have work-life balance when you are working for a startup?

Startup work environment is stressful by nature. All of us are struggling to reach work-life balance. It is clearly very hard as we are usually extending the amount of time to do our works. Can we at least have a life outside of work?

The answer depends on your startup wisdom. If the startup founders are the kind of people who are supporting their employees to have more work-life balance at their companies, then it is possible. But if the founders doesn’t think personal life matters, they will eventually force the employees to sacrifice their personal lives -just like them.

Remember, good work-life balance may save you a lot of money. Happy employees are always more productive and making less mistakes. They are also more creative and innovative. Their wild ideas will contribute to the startup growth. In the end, it will reduce turnover of the startup.

Here are some tips to create work-life balance. Startup founders, try to implement it in the office, while startup employees can slowly suggest their bosses to do these things:

1. Remote working or occasional half-day

Startups are known for flexibility, right? If there are few days that an employee doesn’t need to meet someone at the office, just give him/her a chance to work from home. Also, there are family matters that occasionally only need a half-day off. Don’t be a jerk not letting them go, especially if their families really need them.

2. Care about health, both mentally and physically

Working for long hours might be okay for startup people. But beware if it is starting to affect your health, both mentally and physically. Don’t let yourself and other people at your startup to have burnouts. It’s inevitable when we are working in excess of 80 hours a week.

Yes, our work can be demanding. But address burnout immediately. If you see someone showing symptoms of stress or depression, do something right away. At least, let them work only eight hours a day, before they experience burnout. Give them some time to recharge by decreasing their heavy workload for a week or so.

3. Fun office is a must

Make the work environment less stressful. Everyone at your startup should be able to do something fun during their free time! It might costs some money, but it is clearly worthy for startup advancement. Offer some perks, like nice foods and fun games at the office.

4. Reward hard work with something priceless

Always do something big if there’s any achievement that your startup got. Your startup product went popular? Celebrate it in another city along with the employees’ family members. Your startup just got invested by a big-name? Throw a party that will be memorable for all.


In other words, treat people at your startup just like your family. It’s really the only way you can achieve work-life balance when you are working at a startup.


Next read: How to Avoid Burnout in Startup Life

Article contributed by Startup Jobs Asia‘s Team.

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