How a flexible job can impact your life
While flexible jobs are more common, there is more pushback than you think. What makes a job truly flexible and how can it change your life?
While to some extent, flexible work has become much more commonplace, we have also seen a backlash against it by bosses and TV personalities who can’t accept change. A rise in ‘spying’ and a lack of trust on behalf of managers has meant that for some, the cage of the office has become invisible and has crept inside your home.
What does a truly flexible job mean, and how can it change your life?
What counts as flexibility?
Not being spied on
Some things in this area are a bit of a grey area, and some really aren’t. Some software allows management to not only track every keystroke, but even take pictures of workers through their webcam. That falls firmly in the capital NO category for us.
We believe that productivity is complicated and is different for every person. Being productive doesn’t always look like tapping away at your desk. When we are engrossed in work we often look identical as when we’re engrossed in some wikipedia hole discovering that there used to be human-sized beavers.
For many, getting up at regular intervals, walking, pacing and thinking is a key part of their productivity. Ultimately people should be measured on the quality of their work, whether they completed it on time and not by how busy they looked.
It allows you to fit your life with your job
Happy employees are good employees. Flexibility allows employees to take charge of their own life and happiness. For some going to the gym or seeing friends for a coffee before work sets them up perfectly for a day of crushing it. For others it may need to bend around family and caring commitments. It should be bespoke to everyone.
This is probably the holy grail of flexible working. Can you work where you live. Over the last 50 years there has been a massive movement from rural areas to urban cities for work. This only suits a certain type of person.
With an internet connection and a laptop, most of us can do our work remotely, from anywhere. Whether that’s the English countryside, the Cornish coast, the valleys of Wales, or another country entirely. Location flexibility can mean we let go of very little of our own lives for our jobs, and we feel a sense of loyalty to our company that means we work even better.
Find our 100% flexible jobs here.
What it allows you to do
Pursue passions and hobbies
Flexible work is very often the gift of time. If your hobbies are artistic, business, or cooking, you’ll be much closer to it with more time to devote to it. The increasing popularity of the 4-day work week is also granting people a whole extra day, with no loss of pay, to devote their time to their own projects.
Live a healthier life
Working flexibly means you can work where you want. You might have a better chair, a standing up desk, or be able to go for longer runs and walks at lunch times. Less time spent coughing on smokey platforms and being wedged between other commuters has got to be much better for us. Many people also realise they have more time to prepare their lunchtime meals and often end up eating far more healthily and saving money. Sorry Pret.
Care for family
The responsibilities of our lives rarely fit neatly into a 9 - 5. As many as 1 in 4 workers have considered leaving their jobs due to caring responsibilities. Flexible working allows people to balance their lives and their work lives balance.
Have a better social life
As mentioned earlier, happier employees are better employees. We are social animals, one study even found that social relationships are the most important factor in happiness.
Seeing our friends and family more is incredibly important. It may even be the most important thing. Enjoying your time outside of work and growing as a person only has positive effects for your work.
This is another very important aspect in our lives. Getting up early to catch trains and getting home late due to those same trains being delayed is bad for our sleep. It’s exhausting, we often arrive home only capable of eating and watching television. Flexible working allows you to have a much more human schedule and thankfully, spend more time in bed to allow your brain to function at its peak potential.
The Escape team's favourite reasons.
Dom: “Untethering myself from location-dependent working enables me to live in the mountains and get the best possible work life balance. Every weekend is now a highlight reel rather than the previous one week a year.”
Tim: “Having a job that is flexible with time and location allows me to travel around Spain - but slowly. Setting the alarm about 1.5 hours later and not having to squeeze between bored people on tubes that scream is also very welcome.”
Elena: "I love working remotely as it means you can build your day around the things that make you the most productive and mentally healthy. I like getting started early and rather than spending time on a commute, I get out with neighbours and the dog for a walk at lunch time, cook healthy lunches, save money (except when you need an emergency wispa gold from the shop) and not have to take sad looking tupperwares into the office to microwave. Working from home sometimes, and others from a busy cafe to absorb the buzz. Life is more flexible based on your needs that day. Not being told how and where to work but being trusted to work in a way that is best for you."
Hilary: "Having a flexible job has been so eye-opening for me. From enabling me to live whenever I want to and yet still maintain a job I love, to realising it’s more possible than ever to strike a healthy work-life balance. Sometimes that can mean starting my day with a walk down to the beach, and other times it’s choosing to go on a van trip and working with the back doors opening onto the surrounding countryside."
Amanpreet: "Flexibility has allowed me to honour an intrinsic and personal need for freedom. It gives me control over my life in a way which makes me feel liberated and removed from adhering to external obligations and timelines. Your time is the greatest gift in the world and flexibility allows you to see that everyday."
Jake: "Working remotely has enabled me to live the seaside life that I previously thought would be a retirement pipe dream"